HARTFORD, Conn. — A Connecticut man seen in a widely viewed video pinning an officer with a riot shield during the attack on the U.S. Capitol has been charged with assaulting police officers, federal authorities said Wednesday.
Patrick McCaughey III, 23, of Ridgefield, was arrested Tuesday in South Salem, New York, on charges including assaulting, resisting or impeding officers, violent entry or disorderly conduct, and entering a restricted building or grounds.
McCaughey was scheduled to appear in a federal court in New York City on Wednesday. It was not immediately clear if he has a lawyer would could respond to the allegations. A message seeking comment was left at a phone listing for McCaughey.
Federal authorities said McCaughey struck several police officers with a clear, plastic riot shield inside the Capitol. Authorities said he also used the shield to pin Officer Daniel Hodges of the Metropolitan Police Department against a doorway; a video shows Hodges writhing in pain and another rioter beating Hodges after ripping off the officer’s gas mask. Hodges survived.
Police asked for the public’s help in identifying the attackers and released photos of a man later identified as McCaughey seen in the Capitol during the violence on Jan. 6. A witness came forward identifying McCaughey as the person in the photos.
“The vicious attack on Officer Hodges was abhorrent and quintessentially un-American,” Acting District of Columbia U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin said in a statement.
“It is my pledge that anyone involved in violent attacks on law enforcement at the U.S. Capitol on January 6 will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” Sherwin said. “McCaughey’s alleged actions were an assault on Officer Hodges, the Capitol, and the rule of law itself.”
More than 150 rioters have been arrested. The attack came as Congress met to certify the results of the presidential election. But an angry mob coming from a President Donald Trump rally near the White House broke into the Capitol, forcing members of Congress to flee. Five people died during the riot, including one Capitol Police officer.
Federal authorities said McCaughey and other rioters pushed officers back as they defended the Capitol. A deputy U.S. marshal said in arrest documents that McCaughey pushed Hodges in a doorway with the riot shield as other rioters shoved McCaughey forward, putting a lot of force on Hodges. McCaughey told Hodges to “just go home dude,” the marshal said.
After another rioter assaulted Hodges, McCaughey motioned to other officers that Hodges was injured, the deputy said, and McCaughey later started hitting other officers with the plastic shield.
At one point during the Capitol attack, McCaughey told another person, “I’m not doing anything. I’m just a regular person like everybody else,” the marshal said, citing a cellphone video. McCaughey then said, “This is our building.”
Dave Collins, The Associated Press