A Texas couple who deleted Facebook posts bragging about being at the Capitol riot was arrested for assaulting police officers, FBI says

·3 min read
  • A Texas couple has been charged with assaulting police officers during the Capitol siege.

  • A criminal complaint says the two were captured on police body cameras striking officers.

  • In since-deleted posts, the Middletons bragged about their participation on Facebook.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

A couple from North Texas was arrested Wednesday on charges related to the siege at the US Capitol on January 6, when a mob of Donald Trump's supporters breached the building to disrupt the certification of the election.

mark and jalise middleton
Facebook records in the criminal complaint show Mark and Jalise Middleton, FBI said. FBI, US Department of Justice

In a criminal complaint, the Federal Bureau of Investigations said Mark and Jalise Middleton of Forestburg were captured on footage from body cameras worn by police that showed them assaulting two Metropolitan Police Department officers who were guarding the Capitol.

Related: Pro-Trump rioters stormed the US Capitol, forced into recess

They are facing charges that include assaulting police officers and remaining on restricted grounds, though they did not appear to have entered the building.

The footage shows the police officers struggling against rioters who are pushing against a barricade and trying to break the police line, ignoring commands from officers to step back, the complaint said.

Read more: Trump and his advisors are shrugging off DOJ's Capitol riot probe. But they see danger in the Georgia and New York investigations.

One man wearing a Trump beanie, later identified as Mark Middleton, 51, pushes against the officers and the barricade with his body. When officers repeatedly instructed Middleton to get back, he yelled "f— you!" and continued to push. At one point, he grabs one of the officers and attempts to pull him forward.

Beside Mark, a woman wearing a Trump 2020 beanie, later identified as Jalise Middleton, 50, also grabbed at the officer with her hands, the complaint said. When another officer stepped in, Jalise Middleton struck him too.

The Middletons continued to strike the officers and jab flagpoles at their faces until one officer deployed a chemical spray, forcing them to retreat.

mark and jalise middleton
The criminal complaint included still images of officers' body camera that purportedly showed the Middletons assaulting officers. FBI, US Department of Justice

After receiving a tip, the FBI examined photos and videos the Middletons had shared on Facebook.

"We are on the front lines. We helped push down the barriers. Jalise and I got pepper sprayed, clubbed, and tear gassed. We had to retreat, but more patriots pushed forward, and they're taking back our house," Mark Middleton said in a video shared to his personal account, the complaint said.

"Do not believe the news media, we're not rioters or mobs," he said in a separate comment. "We've been the ones supporting the police, backing the police, but this is how we're being treated?"

Jalise Middleton made incriminating posts on her Facebook page too.

"We fought the cops to get in the Capital and got pepper sprayed and beat but by gosh the patriots got in!" she said. When someone asked why they fought the cops, she replied: "To get in the Capital to send them bastards a clear message that this won't be tolerated."

The complaint said Jalise Middleton deleted the above post days after making them.

Facebook has said it was preserving data related to the Capitol siege in order to aid law enforcement.

To date, at least 439 people have been arrested in the Capitol insurrection.

Have a news tip? Contact this reporter at kvlamis@insider.com.

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