A Pennsylvania woman has been charged with stealing a laptop belonging to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during the Jan. 6 riot, according to reports on Friday.
In addition, federal officials have accused 22-year-old Riley Williams of either selling or otherwise disposing of the HP laptop which has not yet been found, Pittsburgh’s KDKA-TV reported.
Williams was initially arrested in January after federal investigators saw a video clip that she allegedly recorded on a cellphone showing her removing Pelosi’s laptop from her Capitol office as the riot was still underway. However, the Justice Department waited roughly eight months before officially filing charges.
The United Press International reported that she was released with an ankle monitor and confined to her mother’s home in Harrisburg.
Witnesses told federal authorities that Williams hoped to sell the computer, perhaps to a foreign government, but she has denied those claims. Investigators have thus far been unable to corroborate them as well.
“[Witness 1] stated that WILLIAMS intended to send the computer device to a friend in Russia, who then planned to sell the device to SVR, Russia’s foreign intelligence service,” said investigator said, according to Politico. “According to [Witness 1], the transfer of the computer device to Russia fell through for unknown reasons and WILLIAMS still has the computer device or destroyed it.”
Williams faces multiple felony and misdemeanor counts and, according to reports, including a new charge of assaulting or resisting police.
In the video, which was recorded inside the Capitol, a voice investigators believe is Williams can be heard saying, “Dude, put on gloves,” as a gloved hand then reaches out and grabs the laptop from the Speaker’s desk.
“The FBI also alleged that a social media account with the user name ‘Riley’ posted about having stolen from Pelosi and taken her ‘hard drives,'” UPI reported.
She told federal investigators that she changed her phone number after the riots at the direction of her attorney in a case involving alleged abuse from her then-boyfriend, who subsequently turned her into the FBI.
“[Tipster] stated that Williams can be seen directing crowds inside the U.S. Capitol building up a staircase,” said a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia in January. “[The tipster] claimed to have spoken to friends of Williams, who showed a video of Williams taking a laptop computer or hard drive from Speaker Pelosi’s office.”
In January, Harrisburg police spoke to Williams’ father, who told investigators he accompanied her to Washington, D.C. for the rally where President Donald Trump spoke. However, he said that the two of them separated for the day with his daughter heading off with friends.
Another person who breached the Capitol Jan. 6, Richard Barnett, has been charged after entering Pelosi’s office. He was photographed with a foot on her desk. “Another video showed Barnett boasting about taking an envelope from her office,” UPI reported.
He was charged with “knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful entry; violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds; and theft of public money, property or records,” the newswire added.
KDKA-TV said that Williams is one of at least 55 people from Pennsylvania and hundreds nationally who have been charged in connection with the Capitol riot and breach.
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