Washington state couple to face Jan. 6 insurrection charges
Washington state couple to face Jan. 6 insurrection charges

Source: Google News

SEATTLE (AP) — Two people who live outside Tacoma, Washington, have been charged with illegally entering the U.S. Capitol and engaging in disruptive behavior during the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection in Washington, D.C.

Puyallup residents Holly Christensen, 44, and her husband, Scott Christensen, 49, are named in charges unsealed in U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia last month, The Seattle Times reported.

Court documents show they’ve been ordered to appear before a U.S. magistrate judge Thursday to enter pleas. It’s not immediately known if they have lawyers to comment on the allegations.

The alleged crimes are misdemeanors, punishable by up to a year in prison and maximum fine of $100,000.

Scott Christensen is a former realtor who had worked in California and Colorado before moving to Puyallup, where he sold real estate and became a pastor in 2015 at a Tacoma church that closed earlier this year, according to state business records.

According to the charges, FBI agents used cellphone data, Capitol surveillance video, news footage and law enforcement body-camera video as evidence against the Christensens, who according to the charges attended the “Stop the Steal” rally where former President Donald Trump spoke.

The charges said Scott Christensen and his wife were spotted later that afternoon in the Capitol Rotunda where he was captured on police body camera video conversing with a police officer. The charges say the couple remained inside the Capitol for over an hour until they were escorted out by law enforcement.

A mob attacked the Capitol after Trump’s speech in an effort to prevent Congress from ratifying Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election. Five people died in the ensuing violence.

The FBI has mounted a massive investigation to identify the people who forced their way into the Capitol, and nearly 900 have been charged. At least a dozen Washington state residents are among them, including Proud Boy leader Ethan Nordean, who has pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy and sedition.