A former Army Special Forces soldier was arrested Wednesday and charged with several crimes relating to his reported assaults on Capitol Police officers during the Jan. 6 riot, including allegedly throwing a flagpole at an officer.
Jeffrey McKellop is accused of throwing a flagpole with the sharp end forward, as if it were a spear, according to the FBI complaint against McKellop filed by an FBI special agent and reported by Politico.
The complaint says the attack resulted in a laceration to the officer’s face.
The FBI claims McKellop assaulted three additional officers, according to the 27-page complaint.
According to a witness who helped identify him, McKellop was pictured wearing the same helmet and ballistic vest on the day of the insurrection that he wore while deployed in a combat zone in 2018. His identity was further confirmed through additional witnesses and his driver’s license, the complaint states.
McKellop is one of more than military 30 veterans charged over their alleged roles in the riot, but is the first from the Special Operations, The Washington Post reported. He served in the Army for 22 years, including an enlistment from 1993 to 2010 during which he served as a mechanic and Special Forces communications sergeant, the Post reported.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin last month ramped up the military’s efforts to curb extremism in the ranks after reports that almost one in five participants charged in connection to the riot has some kind of military ties.
Greg Hunter and Seth Peritz, believed to be McKellop’s attorneys, did not immediately respond to The Hill’s request for comment.
Updated: 9:47 p.m.