Photo: Dauphin County Prison.
Some of the crimes committed in the Capitol riot are truly breathtaking. One of them was the alleged theft of spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) Laptop. That in itself is exceptional, but now federal officials claim Riley June Williams not only took the laptop but tried to sell it to the Russians. This allegation would raise charges that already include knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building or property without legitimate authority, forced entry, and disorderly behavior for the purposes of the Capitol. Williams, 22, is a healthcare worker.
The FBI included extensive photos of Williams in the uprising, which have also appeared on some media sites. These photos make it virtually impossible to refute some of the allegations. This includes a videotape from Williams who allegedly stole the laptop. There are also allegedly videos of Williams leading rioters up the stairs to Pelosi’s office. The media has also shown pictures allegedly showing Williams balancing with an attacking weapon, albeit not during the riot. The riot images are clearly permitted. The other web images are likely to face a determined motion of defense for expulsion due to their adverse effects.
However, it is the latest claim that is so striking. in the a Court records On Sunday the FBI announced that a witness identifying himself as a former romantic partner said Williams “intended to send the computing device to a friend in Russia, who then planned to deliver the device to SVR, the Russian foreign intelligence service to sell.”
What I couldn’t determine is what steps Williams actually took to seek such a transfer to the Russians. It doesn’t take much to identify such criminal behavior, but the reports are vague about how or why the efforts have failed. There is no indication that she actually made contact. However, the speaker’s laptop may contain material that can be considered classified. Even if classified on a confidential level, prosecutors could bring charges of espionage conspiracy or other national security violations. However, you might have been lucky. A Pelosi employee reported that a laptop was stolen from a conference room but was only used for presentations.
These videotapes show a spectrum of illegal behavior. Some people meander and seem surprised to get inside. Others are in full turmoil, rummaging through papers and smashing mirrors. However, if those claims are true, Williams made the mistake of a lifetime of radically increasing her liability by taking this laptop with him. If she then took steps to sell it to the Russians, she could spend much of the rest of her life in prison.