Federal prosecutors previously said there was evidence rioters intended to “ capture and murder ” those responsible.
The chief federal prosecutor in Washington, DC said there was no “direct evidence” to suggest that the rioters who stormed the United States Capitol formed “capture to kill teams.”
Friday’s comments by Acting U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin appeared to be an effort to reverse claims Arizona federal prosecutors made in a court file Thursday night, in which they alleged there was evidence that the rioters intended to “capture and murder elected officials.” “.
Sherwin said his office is leading the prosecution effort, but as local offices help locate suspects in their districts, there may have been a “disconnect” from the evidence obtained so far in the cases.
Late Thursday, federal prosecutors made sweeping statements about continuing the investigation in a case as they asked a judge to detain Jacob Chansley, an Arizona man and conspiracy theorist QAnon pictured wearing horns then that he was standing at Vice President Mike Pence’s office in the US Senate chamber.
In the file, they said Chansley left a note for Pence warning that “it is only a matter of time, justice is coming.”
“Strong evidence, including Chansley’s own words and actions on Capitol Hill, supports the intention of the rioters on Capitol Hill was to capture and assassinate elected officials of the United States government,” the memo reads.
A spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona told Reuters news agency the office plans to file an amended memo today, ahead of Chansley’s appearance in federal court for his detention hearing.
At a press briefing on Friday, Sherwin said his office has initiated 98 criminal proceedings to date and opened investigations into more than 275 people in connection with the Capitol riots, in which Trump supporters took stormed the building, ransacked offices and, in some cases, attacked. police.
Steven D’Antuono, deputy director in charge of the FBI’s Washington field office, urged suspects at the briefing to surrender freely.
“For those of you who have taken part in the violence, here is something you should know: Every FBI field office in the country is looking for you,” he said. “In fact, even your friends and family are warning us.”