The legal document containing the case file against Iced Earth's Jon Schaffer for his role in the U.S. Capitol riots has surfaced, offering new information about Schaffer's involvement in the event.
Schaffer, who turned himself into authorities shortly after the riot, is a free man at the moment, as part of his guilty plea agreement. Schaffer pled guilty to two charges (he was originally charged with six). The charges include obstruction of an official proceeding of Congress, and trespassing on restricted grounds of the Capitol while armed with a deadly or dangerous weapon.
Here is how the federal government described Schaffer's actions, as well as revealing that Schaffer admitted he had no legal right to enter the Capitol:
At approximately 2:40 p.m., as legislators and their staff were being evacuated to secure locations, Schaffer, still wearing his Oath Keepers hat and tactical vest, and still carrying on his person bear spray-positioned himself at the front of a large mob that broke open the Capitol building doors being guarded by four Capitol Police officers wearing riot gear. Schaffer was among the first six individuals to push past the damaged doors and into the building, forcing the officers to retreat. As the mob swelled inside, and officers were being assaulted, Schaffer and other members of the mob continued to advance while aggressively gesturing toward a row of five to six backpedaling officers trying to maintain a security line in front of them. The officers' effort quickly failed as Schaffer and the rest of the mob overwhelmed the officers, who ultimately deployed a chemical irritant to disperse the mob.
Schaffer was among those who were sprayed in the face by the irritant. He thereafter exited the building, with his unholstered bear spray now in hand, through the same doors that he had entered through approximately nine minutes earlier. When Schaffer unlawfully entered the Capitol building, he was aware that the Joint Session to certify the Electoral College results had commenced and that the Vice President had announced that he did not intend to stop the certification. Wearing a tactical vest and armed with bear spray, Schaffer unlawfully entered the building with the purpose of influencing, affecting, and retaliating against the conduct of government by stopping or delaying the Congressional proceeding by intimidation or coercion.
Schaffer admits that his belief that the Electoral College results were fraudulent is not a legal justification for unlawfully entering the Capitol building and using intimidation to influence, stop, or delay the Congressional proceeding.
You can read the full statement of offense here. Schaffer's bail is under the following conditions:
- He must submit to court supervision in Indiana.
- He must surrender his passport and international traveling documents
- He must stay out of Washington D.C., outside of court hearings and attorney meetings
- He will be permitted to travel within the US with notice to pretrial services
- He cannot possess any firearms or explosive devices, even legally. Firearms must be removed from his home.
Schaffer is the first person of 400 arrests from the Capitol riots to plea guilty. as the Justice Department is working on the other cases. It is likely that Schaffer's cooperation will lead to him testifying in front of the grand jury, as suggested by a leaked prosecution report.