One of the most notorious defendants, indicted by Trump supporters in the January 6 riot, thought he and other rioters broke into the White House, not the U.S. Capitol, that day, a newly released video shows.
“That’s me, I’m touching the White House,” boasted Douglas Austin Jensen as he stood on the Capitol grounds, according to a selfie video from his own cell phone that day, in which he was also chasing a police officer while he was there leads a pack of rioters.
“That’s why we’re here.”
“I’m in the White House just so you know,” Jensen said after videotaping other members of the mob who had gathered outside the Capitol.
Jensen’s lack of awareness of where he actually was played a role in Washington Federal Judge Timothy Kelly’s decision on Tuesday to release Jensen after six months in house arrest in Iowa.
Kelly reportedly said during a trial that Jensen does not appear to be someone who could have planned the attack as he appears to have “no basic understanding of where he was that day”.
Jensen, 41, wasn’t the only supporter of then-President Donald Trump who didn’t know the names of Washington’s landmarks as they swarmed outside and inside the Capitol, disrupting a joint session of Congress confirming Joe Biden’s election as president.
“Storming the White House is what we’re doing,” someone else said on a video captured by Jensen, a resident of Des Moines.
But the third video from Jensen’s phone released in federal court in Washington shows that many of the people in the mob knew what country they were in when they said, “USA, USA!” chanted. while the police in riot gear watched.
Trump was accused of sparking the uprising after calling on a crowd of supporters at a rally outside the actual White House to march to the Capitol and fight “like hell” against confirmation of Biden’s victory. During an interview with Fox News on Sunday, Trump hailed the crowd at the rally as “peaceful people”, “great people” and “patriots”.
Trump was charged by the House of Representatives with inciting the riot. He was acquitted following a Senate trial that took place after he left office.
Jensen, who is being held without bail, was one of the first people to break through the doors of the Capitol, according to prosecutors. He is said to have had a knife with him during the invasion.
Douglas Austen Jensen of Iowa, a supporter of President Donald Trump wearing a QAnon shirt, confronts the police as Trump supporters demonstrate on the second floor of the U.S. Capitol near the Senate entrance after they witnessed a demonstration on Aug.
Mike Theiler | Reuters
After pushing inside, he led an angry mob that chased Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman down the corridors of the Capitol complex when the cop lured them out of the Senate Chamber.
Jensen, a self-proclaimed believer in the QAnon conspiracy, refused Goodman’s order to back off and raise his hands, instead yelling at Goodman, “continuing to act menacingly, with the crowd following behind him, forcing the officer to continue withdrawing,” wrote an FBI agent on a court document.
Jensen’s actions were captured on a surveillance video that showed him wearing a “Q” t-shirt.
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Jensen was arrested on January 8 and charged three days later.
He is one of more than 500 people charged in connection with the riot that killed five people, including Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick and Ashli Babbit, a rioter who was shot dead by police when she tried to enter through a broken window area near the chamber of the house.
Jensen told an FBI agent and a Des Moines police detective that he was the person who led the mob that was tracking Goodman in a video published by The Guardian’s website.
“Jensen specifically admitted to chasing the Capitol cops up the stairs and refusing to obey the officer’s rightful orders,” the FBI agent wrote in a statement of fact filed in court.
“Jensen stated that he purposely positioned himself as one of the first people in the United States Capitol because he was wearing his’ Q ‘t-shirt and he wanted his t-shirt to be on video so that’ Q ‘the credit.’ “
He is accused of having knowingly entered or resided in a restricted building or site without legal authority; Disruption of the proper conduct of government business; violent intrusion and disorderly behavior in a Capitol; Parades, demonstrations, or pickets in a Capitol building and obstruction of a law enforcement officer during a riot.
He has pleaded not guilty in the case. A status conference on his case is scheduled for July 27th.
A judge who ordered Jensen to be arrested without bail in January noted, “Mr. Jensen allegedly traveled halfway across Iowa to the District of Columbia, attended a rally in support of former President Trump and joined the rioters by climbing through a broken window to enter the Capitol armed with a knife, led a mob threatening Capitol police officer Eugene Goodman up a flight of stairs, threatened to take over the officer’s baton, and refused to obey the policeman’s lawful orders to stop and leave.
Jensen was fired by his employer, Forrest and Associate Masonry, shortly after his arrest. The company disavowed his behavior.
The Des Moines Register previously reported that Jensen pleaded guilty to trespassing charges after being charged with fifth degree theft in December 2006, and that he was sentenced to three days in prison after abusing domestic violence and disorder Had pleaded guilty to conduct in Minnesota.