With less than two months to go before the Michigan Primaries, Ryan Kelley, one of five Republican candidates for Michigan governor and a loyal defender of former President Donald Trump, was charged with misdemeanors Thursday for his role in the 2021 Jan. 6th Riot at the U.S. Capitol.
According to the Associated Press, Kelley, 40, was arrested in western Michigan and awaits a court hearing in Grand Rapids, FBI spokeswoman Mara Schneider said.
His arrest conveniently comes just hours before the Jan. 6th House committee holds their widely anticipated public hearing, showing never-seen video, audio, and supposedly an array of evidence highlighting the violence that erupted on Jan. 6, 2021.
It’s unclear why authorities decided to arrest Kelly now, nearly 18 months after the incident. Kelley has long acknowledged his role at the Capitol that day and never went into the building which is a leading cause of most of the arrests made.
In a court document, federal investigators filed photos of Kelley in a baseball cap worn backward, trying to rally the pro-Trump crowd.
Kelley was recorded on video repeatedly waving to the crowd and directing them toward stairs leading into the building, the FBI said.
He used his phone to “film the crowd assaulting and pushing past U.S. Capitol police officers” and was in a crowd that climbed stairs to a Capitol entrance after causing police to retreat, the document states.
Kelley, who currently lives in Allendale Township, is accused of disruptive conduct, injuring public property, and entering restricted space without permission, according to the criminal complaint.