Actions

New evidence revealed in Jan. 6 Capitol riot investigation of Warren County couple

Unsealed search warrant shows 20 firearms seized
Federal agents seized firearms and ammunition from the Morrow, Ohio home of Bennie and Sandra Parker
Posted at 7:21 PM, Jul 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-30 02:47:40-04

MORROW, OH — A search warrant unsealed Wednesday shows federal agents investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the United States Capitol seized more than 20 firearms and thousands of rounds of ammunition from a Warren County home.

Federal agents executed the search warrant in February at a house owned by Bennie and Sandra Parker.

The Parkers are members of the Oathkeepers militia group, according to an FBI affidavit.

Bennie, 70, and Sandra, 60, are charged with Conspiracy and other counts related to the forced entry at the Capitol.

Court records show the Parkers, along with other Oathkeepers accused of conspiring with them, have pleaded not guilty.

Photo of Sandra Parker inside Capitol on Jan. 6 from federal affidavit
Photo of Sandra Parker inside Capitol on Jan. 6 from federal affidavit

Federal agents seized magazines and boxes of ammunition for a wide variety of weapons, including handguns, semi-automatic rifles and shotguns, according to a list of items attached to the executed search warrant.

Agents also took cell phones, computers, hard drives, flash drives and other items, according to court records.

The disclosure, and recent arrests of previously unnamed defendants, is a reminder that although the riot occurred nearly seven months ago, the investigation of what happened and who is responsible is far from over.

The FBI's Breach of the Capitol webpage frequently updates the status of hundreds of criminal cases.

On Thursday, the WCPO 9 I-Team reviewed cases for the 50 defendants from Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.

Justin Stoll on January 6 - 16x9
Justin Stoll on January 6 at United States Capitol in Washington, D.C.

Justin Stoll, a painter from Wilmington, is charged with making interstate threats and tampering with a witness by threat.

The charges stem from Stoll's alleged online threats to someone who commented on one of his videos of the Capitol riots.

Court records show Stoll is in plea negotiations.

Stoll's preliminary hearing is scheduled for Aug. 31.

Ten of the defendants from Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana have agreed to plead guilty or have already pleaded guilty.

Court records in these cases show federal agents mapped the location of some Ohio defendants, including Walt Messer of Englewood, by using data from their email, phones and social media – then comparing that to photos showing them in the same locations.

Map showing Walt Messer's movements on Jan. 6 at the Capitol
Map showing Walt Messer's movements on Jan. 6 at the Capitol

Federal agents arrested Messer on Wednesday, according to the FBI.

Walt Messer in the Capitol Jan. 6
Walt Messer in the Capitol Jan. 6

In one case, federal agents say they used a bar code on a stolen coat rack to confirm the coat rack had been stolen from the House of Representatives.

In addition to facing possible prison sentences and fines, defendants are also being ordered to pay a share of restitution to the federal government for the estimated $1.4 million in damages to the Capitol caused by rioters on Jan. 6.