Judge calls Capitol riot case of this Idaho man ‘different,’ but grants pretrial release

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Jacob Scholl
·3 min read
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An Idaho man arrested Thursday and accused of assaulting U.S. Capitol police in the Jan. 6 riot will be released from police custody.

Duke Wilson, 66, of Nampa, appeared Friday morning via video for an initial appearance in federal court. During a hearing that lasted less than 30 minutes, Wilson was read the allegations and charges he’s facing by Chief Magistrate Judge Ronald Bush.

Bush presided over the initial appearances for the other two Treasure Valley residents charged in connection with the Capitol riot, Yvonne St Cyr and Josiah Colt. Bush mentioned during the hearing that Wilson’s case is more serious, but also said he would be granted pretrial release.

“What is described here is qualitatively different in a serious way,” Bush said.

The Nampa man is accused of grabbing a thin PVC pipe that was several feet long and jabbing officers in a tunnel area of the U.S. Capitol. He allegedly threw the pipe at police and later pushed against officers who were trying to stop the mob of Donald Trump supporters from entering the building.

Wilson was charged in a Washington, D.C., federal court via complaint. He is facing several felonies, including assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers or employees; and obstruction of an official proceeding. Bush said during the Friday hearing that those charges carry prison sentences of up to eight years and 20 years, respectively.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank Zebari told the court Friday that Wilson was on his way to Oregon when federal investigators served a search warrant on his home. Authorities contacted Wilson, who later turned himself in at a local jail.

After being appointed a public defender, Wilson waived his right to a preliminary hearing. As of Friday, he did not request to transfer the case to the District of Idaho.

Bush ruled that Wilson must abide by several conditions upon his release. He must give a DNA sample and surrender his passport, and he may not travel outside Idaho without prior notification to pretrial services. It was noted during the hearing that he frequently sees family in Oregon, and he must notify the court before leaving the state.

Wilson is retired, but the court noted that he might be required to seek employment if directed to do so by pretrial services. He must also submit to location monitoring.

Wilson’s next court hearing, an initial appearance in a D.C. court, is scheduled for next Thursday, April 22.

Wilson became the fourth Idahoan to be charged in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, joining St Cyr, Colt and Sandpoint man Michael Pope. Cases against the other three were still active and ongoing as of Friday.

More than 400 people from across the county have now been charged in the incident, which left five people dead, including a police officer, and more than 150 injured. A mob of Trump backers unwilling to accept his loss in the presidential election forced Congress into lockdown on the day it was certifying the victory of President Joe Biden over Trump, who gave a speech to the crowd before it marched to the Capitol and stormed the building.