- An accused Capitol rioter told KLAS-TV he believes Donald Trump’s words played a role in the attack.
- “He’s one of the most powerful persons in the world,” Ronald Sandlin told the outlet of Trump.
- Sandlin is accused of carrying a knife during the riot and smoking weed inside the Capitol.
A Tennessee man accused of smoking marijuana inside the US Capitol on January 6 told a local news station that he knew “we took it too far” and that there would be “consequences.”
Ronald “Ronnie” Sandlin, of Memphis Tennessee, faces a slate of charges stemming from his alleged participation in the Capitol attack, including assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers, civil disorder, and physical violence in the Capitol grounds or buildings.
Prosecutors say the 34-year-old attended the “Stop the Steal” rally with his friend Nathan DeGrave and another man, Josiah Colt, who are also both charged in the riot. According to a criminal complaint, Sandlin posted on social media that he had started a GoFundMe to raise money for his trip to DC to attend the rally.
“Who is going to Washington D.C. on the 6th of January?” Sandlin posted on social media before the riot, according to court documents. “I’m going to be there to show support for our president and to do my part to stop the steal and stand behind Trump when he decides to cross the rubicon.”
Investigators said Sandlin and his two compatriots were armed with weapons during the riot, alleging that Sandlin carried a knife, though he did not use it or bring it out during the attack.
In an interview with KLAS-TV’s I-Team earlier this month, Sandlin said the men wanted to make sure they were prepared to defend themselves.
“I’ve worn the MAGA cap outside and have had people spit on me,” Sandlin told the outlet. “We’ve had years where if you support Donald Trump…you could be subject to violence. All of our conversations of, when we talked about violence was, ‘Hey we need to protect ourselves against violence.'”