WASHINGTON – A Maryland man was arrested today for assaulting law enforcement officers and a member of the media during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. His actions and those of others have disrupted a joint session of the United States Congress convened to verify and count electoral votes related to the presidential election.
Rodney Kenneth Milstreed, 55, of Finksburg, Maryland, is charged in a criminal complaint filed in the District of Columbia with assaulting, resisting or obstructing officers with a dangerous weapon, civil disorder, obstructing an official procedure, simple assault and offences. Milstreed was arrested in Brighton, Colorado, and made his first appearance today in the District of Colorado.
According to court documents, on January 6, Milstreed illegally advanced through a crowd of rioters on the Capitol grounds, toward Capitol Police officers on the steps of Upper West Plaza. At approximately 1:10 p.m., Milstreed picked up what appeared to be a flagpole and threw it, javelin-style, at the officers, hitting one officer. As events continued that day, a law enforcement officer picked up what appeared to be a smoke grenade from the ground and threw it towards the crowd of rioters. Milstreed ran to the smoke grenade, picked it up, and threw it back at law enforcement.
According to the documents, Milstreed also assaulted a member of the media who was wearing a lanyard displaying identifying information and carrying at least a camera and a backpack. Milstreed grabbed the backpack and pulled the media member backwards down the stairs. He then shoved the victim and advanced towards her with a threatening air.
Social media recordings showed Milstreed communicating with others while on the grounds of the United States Capitol. Among other things, he sent pictures of blood on the floor in what appears to be the Upper West Plaza, then later added, “Dude, I’ve never seen anything like it. I feel so alive.” Three days later, on January 9, 2021, Milstreed sent a message to a Facebook associate describing his participation in the violence and his intention to “smash some heads” while he was there.
This case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Counterterrorism Section of the National Security Division of the Department of Justice. Valuable assistance was provided by the United States Attorney’s Offices for the Districts of Maryland and Colorado.
The case is being investigated by the FBI Field Office in Baltimore. Valuable assistance was provided by the FBI Field Office in Denver, the FBI Field Office in Washington, which identified Milstreed as No. 156 in its fact-finding photos, the Metropolitan Police Department, and the United States Capitol.
In the 16 months since January 6, 2021, more than 800 people have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the US Capitol, including more than 250 people charged with assault or obstruction of law enforcement. The investigation is still ongoing.
Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit tips.fbi.gov.
An indictment or complaint is only an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in court.