WASHINGTON -- The former chairman of the right-wing Proud Boys group was detained until Tuesday after his arrest and indictment regarding the Jan. 6 attack at the U.S. Capitol.
After a Tuesday detention hearing in Miami, a Florida federal magistrate judge ordered Enrique Tarrio to be held pretrial. A spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia (which is currently prosecuting Jan. 6-related cases) confirmed the magistrate judge's decision. Tarrio's attorneys did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In a detention memo Monday evening, federal prosecutors claimed that Tarrio was not subject to conditions that would ensure his safety or that he could appear in court in the future. Tarrio made "public comments intended to chill witnesses against his coconspirators" and had taken steps not to be caught by law enforcement.
Tarrio's five co-accused were also ordered to be detained until trial. Tarrio faces one count each of conspiracy to obstruct a formal proceeding, one count obstruction of an official proceeding, one count obstruction of law enforcement during civil disorder, two counts destruction of government property and two counts assaulting or resisting certain officers.
Federal authorities claim that Tarrio established a new chapter of Proud Boys called the "Ministry of Self Defense" in December 2020 and communicated with members via an encrypted app.
Tarrio was not present at the Capitol on Jan. 6, as he was already arrested on Jan. 4, after he lit a #BLACKLIVESMATTER sign in the nation's capital during the previous month, when Donald Trump supporters were gathered to support the president's attempts to reverse the results of the 2020 presidential elections.
Tarrio was released on Jan. 5 and arrested. He then met with Elmer Stewart Rhodes III, founder of Oath Keepers, and other people in the garage next to the Capitol. A documentary crew captured the encounter and included audio from a person who referenced the Capitol.
Tarrio sent a message to the Proud Boys after the attack on Capitol, urging them to "Do it again," according to prosecutors.
The Justice Department claimed that Tarrio could "serious danger" of tampering with evidence or witnesses if he was released pre-trial. Tarrio also had a "cavalier attitude toward the law", citing his seven adult arrests, three convictions and seven adult arrests.
Prosecutors argued that Tarrio "spearheaded” a conspiracy to block Joe Biden's election college victory.
A grand jury found probable cause to believe Tarrio was the leader orchestrator of a plot to corruptly influence, obstruct and impede an official proceeding. This included a plot to attack the Capitol while the Joint Session of Congress examined the election results. Prosecutors wrote that Tarrio encouraged the mob members to remain in the building, and suggested to their close friends that they repeat the act again. "Tarrio displayed a contempt for laws and Constitutions of this country, making it difficult to trust that he will comply with any conditions set by this Court for his freedom."