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Police arrested a Colorado pastor for his participation in the Capitol riot after a Bible college colleague tipped off the FBI

Screenshot of video of ETHRIDGE (circled in yellow) helping to remove fencing along the northwest approach to the U.S. Capitol

FBI/Justice Department

  • The FBI on Friday arrested a Colorado pastor who was captured inside the Capitol Rotunda on the day of the riot.
  • A Bible college colleague who knew the pastor told the FBI the pastor bragged about participating.
  • The pastor said in a video posted to social media on the day of the riot that he would probably lose his job afterward.  

Police on Friday indicted a Colorado youth pastor who participated in the Capitol riot on multiple felony and misdemeanor charges, according to a Justice Department release. 

The FBI was able to identify the pastor, Tyler Ethridge, after a Bible college colleague tipped them off, saying he had bragged about his participation in the riot last year on social media. 

According to the DOJ release, the Bible college attendee, who was not named in supporting court documents released by the Justice Department, told the FBI that Ethridge was “telling everyone” on Facebook about being “on scaffolding outside Nancy Pelosi’s office and inside the chamber.”

Video captured on the day of the event shows him acknowledging the risk to his job. 

“I’m probably going to lose my job as a pastor after this,” he said, according to court documents.

The Capitol riot left five people, including one police officer, dead. Members of the Proud Boys, which is classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, were present, a Vice reporter tweeted.

Organizers were emboldened by former President Donald Trump’s urges to protest the results of the 2020 election with him, despite Democrat Joe Biden’s election victory. While members of Congress were meeting inside the Capitol to certify the results and verify Biden’s presidency, Trump supporters organized an attempted coup and stormed the Capitol.

Last year, insurrectionists scrambled to delete photos and social-media posts proving their participation in the Capitol riot. Some broke their cellphones, scrubbed their social media accounts, and tried to wipe hard drives that might contain photos and other proof of their involvement. 

But others, like Ethridge, boasted of their involvement, making it easier for the FBI to catch and charge them.

After the riot, Ethridge urged his social media friends to not “be afraid of what they sentence you with,” according to court documents.

“I’m not. I’m ready for whatever I’ll be charged with,” he continued. “America is still primed and ready.”

So far, more than 870 people have been charged in connection with the insurrection, according to Insider’s database. 

Ethridge is being charged with six counts, including civil disorder and obstructing an official proceeding.

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