The FBI "is seeking the public's assistance in identifying this individual who made unlawful entry into US Capitol on Jan. 6," the agency's Washington Field Office tweeted Monday.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is seeking the public's assistance to identify the man seen carrying a large Confederate flag inside the US Capitol in widely circulated photographs taken during the January 6 riot. The Justice Department and the FBI are currently on a nationwide manhunt to track down scores of people who stormed the Capitol last week during which at least five people — including a police officer — died. According to CNN, while the FBI has published a number of bulletins asking for help in identifying dozens of those whose photographs were captured amid the attempted insurgency, the agency is specifically asking about the man seen in what it describes as Photograph #30.
The FBI "is seeking the public's assistance in identifying this individual who made unlawful entry into US Capitol on Jan. 6," the agency's Washington Field Office tweeted Monday. "Anyone with information regarding [this] individual, or anyone who witnessed any unlawful violent actions at the Capitol or near the area, is asked to contact the FBI's Toll-Free Tipline at 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324) to verbally report tips. You may also submit any information, photos, or videos that could be relevant online at fbi.gov/USCapitol. You may also contact your local FBI office or the nearest American Embassy or Consulate. When calling to provide a tip on this individual, please reference Photograph #30," the FBI website states.
Reuters and Getty photographers reportedly captured the goateed man with a widow's peak carrying a pole — taller than himself — that bore a Confederate flag across the Minton tile floors of the Capitol. He is said to have strode past the portraits of abolitionist Charles Sumner and slaveholder John Calhoun with the red banner with the starred blue cross. Before Wednesday, the closest any insurgent carrying a Confederate flag ever came to the Capitol was about 6 miles, during the Battle of Fort Stevens on July 11 and 12, 1864.
According to The New York Times, investigators are currently pursuing over 150 suspects for prosecution while analysts are scouring intelligence to identify the role any domestic terrorist organizations or foreign adversaries may have played in radicalizing those who were a part of the mob. Representative Tim Ryan, Democrat of Ohio and the chairman of the House subcommittee that has oversight of the Capitol Police, told reporters on Monday that early investigation indicates that at least some assailants initiated a more organized attack.
Reports about pipe bombs planted at the nearby Republican and Democratic Party headquarters on Wednesday afternoon drew some law enforcement attention away from the breach that was unfolding at the Capitol, said Ryan, pointing out that it suggests a "level of coordination." Two Capitol Police officers have also been suspended after one was photographed with rioters and the other was snapped wearing a MAGA hat amid the rioters. The FBI is said to be working closely with the Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington to track down those who attacked law enforcement.
#FBIWFO is seeking the public's assistance in identifying this individual who made unlawful entry into US Capitol on Jan. 6. If you witnessed unlawful violent actions contact the #FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI or submit photos/videos at https://t.co/NNj84wkNJP. https://t.co/Dxyb7kweea pic.twitter.com/DSbXkNx0Il— FBI Washington Field (@FBIWFO) January 11, 2021
The agency has received more than 70,000 photographic and video tips after seeking the public's help in ID'ing suspects and the Justice Department has already gathered enough information to charge and arrest more than a dozen people. These include the man seen carrying Speaker Nancy Pelosi's lectern and another who was photographed with his feet up on a desk in her office.
WHY can't we ID this guy? I have been searching everywhere. A lot of dead ends. Close calls but not him. There's a big group of us hell bent on nailing him. Spread the picture. pic.twitter.com/m7dVjYd4Fh— Thaddeus Stevens (@TruthThaddeus) January 11, 2021
Here’s another photo of Confederate Flag Guy, with another insurrectionist who appears to have stolen a police riot shield and armor pic.twitter.com/GKBigOtTyK— Aki Peritz (@AkiPeritz) January 11, 2021
More photos pic.twitter.com/AcLgSj3Oym— TorchyToo WEARS A MASK **Please Stay Home** (@TorchyToo) January 11, 2021
"These are all diverse people with different ideologies, but the commonality is they all follow the leadership of Donald Trump," said Gregory W. Ehrie, a former senior F.B.I. agent who was the bureau’s domestic terrorism czar from 2013 to 2015 and is now the vice president of law enforcement and analysis at the Anti-Defamation League. "We are seeing this extremist group form in real-time, and it is led by Donald Trump. These are tough comparisons to make for all of us, but he stood in front of a crowd and told them to go to the Capitol, and everyone listened."
Editor's note: This is a developing story, and we’ll update as we learn more. Information about the Capitol riots is swiftly changing, and Upworthy is committed to providing the most recent and verified updates in our articles and reportage. However, considering the frequency in developments, some of the information/data in this article may have changed since the time of publication.