Who are the Wisconsin residents charged with crimes in the Jan. 6 insurrection?

Three years after supporters for former President Donald Trump stormed into the U.S. Capitol as Congress was conducting the Electoral College vote count, there have been 11 Wisconsinites charged with crimes related to their actions on Jan. 6, 2021.

By Nathan Denzin

January 8, 2024

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An overhead image shows a group of people, some of whom are carrying or wearing various flags, entering through a doorway and standing in a room with a tile floor and illuminated chandelier, with windows with no glass in the frames on one side of the entry — an added illustration of a box centers on a person identified as Paul Kovacik.

A still from video footage obtained by U.S. Capitol Police shows an individual identified as Paul Kovacik, outlined in a red box, entering through the doors of the Senate Wing entrance to the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Source: U.S. Department of Justice)

It’s been more than three years since the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection, and the federal government is still working to arrest and charge people who illegally entered the U.S. Capitol that day.

Law enforcement agencies have made more than 1,200 arrests with over 700 guilty pleas and convictions, including 11 arrests from Wisconsin.

Police officers were beaten and trampled by protesters who wanted to disrupt the formal tabulation of electoral votes in Congress on Jan. 6. Their end goal was to allow then-President Donald Trump, who lost the 2020 election, to retain office.

The insurrection started in the wake of Trump’s “Stop the Steal” rally outside the Capitol’s grounds. There, the former president told his supporters he hoped then Vice President Mike Pence would “stand up for the good of our Constitution and for the good of our country” and refuse to certify the count. When the crowd moved toward and forcibly into the Capitol, violence aimed toward Pence and other elected officials erupted, and resulted in five deaths.

An overhead image shows a group of police wearing helmets and other protective gear, with some carrying batons, standing in a cluster at the entrance to a doorway and facing a crowd of people, some of whom are carrying flags, in a room with a tile floor and illuminated chandelier, with other officers standing in front of windows windows with no glass in the frames on one side of the entry.

A still from video footage obtained by the U.S. Capitol Police shows people pushing through a podium used as a barrier by law enforcement officers at exterior doors on the Senate side of the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021 — an individual identified as Michael Fitzgerald was observed the front of this group. (Source: U.S. Department of Justice)

Wisconsin residents have been charged with crimes that range from misdemeanor unlawful entry to felony assault.

Here are each of the 11 men who have been arrested from the Badger State listed by the date they were arrested:

Kevin Loftus
Loftus — a U.S. Army veteran and Eau Claire resident — live-posted his experience to Facebook, noting he was “One of 700 inside”, adding “That’s right folks some of us are in it to win it.”

He was arrested on Jan. 11, pled guilty to two charges related to entering the Capitol and was released on personal recognizance until his trial.

While free on release, Loftus messaged users in an online gaming app, saying he was famous and a hero for his actions Jan. 6. He also shared photos of himself holding two assault-style rifles. The FBI was alerted and searched his home, but did not find any guns. Loftus told officers the pictures he sent were old.

Loftus was later sentenced to three years of probation without jail or home detention, which is to be served in Eau Claire. He also has to complete 60 hours of community service and pay $500 restitution.

A person identified as Kevin Loftus poses for a photo while holding a U.S. flag while standing inside a room with curved marble masonry walls, a sculpture in a niche above a doorway and two visible paintings — "Declaration of Independence" by "Surrender of General Burgoyne" by John Trumbull — with other people standing and sitting in the background.

An image posted to Facebook shows an individual identified as Kevin Loftus posing for a photo inside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Source: U.S. Department of Justice)

David Charles Mish Jr.
Mish — from West Allis — was one of the first people through the Capitol’s front windows. Court documents show Mish first contacted Washington, D.C. police on Jan. 7 with information on Ashli Babbitt, the insurrectionist who was shot and killed by police as she tried to enter the Speaker’s Lobby through a broken window.

Mish was one of the first people to reach the door to the Speaker’s Lobby, but was not found not to have engaged in violent acts while inside the Capitol.

He ended up pleading guilty to one charge, and was sentenced to 30 days in jail plus $500 in restitution.

Michael Fitzgerald
Fitzgerald — a U.S. Marine Corps veteran now residing in Janesville — was one of the very first people to be arrested by law enforcement after Jan. 6. Court documents show Fitzgerald at the leading edge of the crowd that broke through Capitol windows, where security cameras then observed him walking around the building for about 40 minutes before exiting.

He pleaded not guilty to charges of violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds as well as obstruction of law enforcement. The case is still ongoing, but Fitzgerald is out on personal recognizance.

In an interview with the Janesville Gazette, Fitzgerald said he did not want to participate in any violence, and was pushed by the crowd into the Capitol. Since he was one of the first in the building, he ended that night as number 32 on the FBI’s America’s Most Wanted list.

Fitzgerald turned himself into law enforcement on Jan. 9, and has since been diagnosed with stage four colon and liver cancer that spread to his lungs. His sentence is still pending.

Abram Markofski, Brandon Nelson
Markofski and Nelson — from La Crosse and Dane counties respectively — both admitted to entering the Capitol for about 40 minutes during the insurrection. The duo drove to Washington D.C. from Wisconsin the night before, but were not found to have engaged in any violent acts.

Both pled guilty to their charges and apologized for their actions while in court. They were both sentenced to two years on probation and ordered each of them to pay $500 in restitution. Additionally, Nelson was fined $2,500 and Markofski $1,000.

Riley Kasper
Kasper — from Pulaski — has one of the longest complaint documents of anyone from Wisconsin. Records obtained by the FBI show Kasper planned in advance to attend Trump’s “Stop the Steal” rally, and brought pepper spray with him.

The complaint alleges in a now deleted YouTube video, Kasper is seen spraying an orange mist toward police. In a Jan. 7 text from Kasper he admits: “I pepper sprayed 3 cops so bad they got undressed and went home… I basically organized my own little militia and we f****** took over Congress.”

He later sent texts on his plan to return to the Capitol on Jan. 20 when Biden was inaugurated.

“A lot of the people who were there are planning to go back on the 20th for Biden’s inauguration or hopefully lack there of… We’re gonna bring our paintball guns with f****** pepper balls, a can of bear spray each, a baton, taser and my extension ladder lol.”

Kasper pled guilty to charges of assaulting, resisting, or impeding officers in September 2023 and is now awaiting sentencing.

A screenshot shows a person wearing a balaclava-style mask raising their right arm and dispensing an aerosol from a can, with

A zoomed-in screenshot of a video posted to YouTube shows an individual identified as Riley Kasper, outlined in a red box, who is “spraying an orange substance consistent with pepper spray,” highlighted with a red arrow, toward federal law enforcement officers outside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Source: U.S. Department of Justice)

Paul Edward Kovacik
Kovacik — who lives in the Milwaukee area — was in the Capitol on the House side for roughly 60 to 90 minutes on Jan. 6, but was not found to have engaged in any violent acts. He had also recorded and uploaded multiple YouTube videos of his time inside the building.

Kovacik agreed to a plea deal in December 2022, and was sentenced to 90 days in jail and three years of probation in June 2023. He also had to pay $500 in restitution.

Colin Weyer
Weyer — from Plover — was caught in pictures from security cameras and other media in the capitol. Weyer graduated from Stevens Point Area Senior High in 2019, and wrote multiple Facebook posts decrying equity, diversity and the political left as recently as May 21, 2021. Those posts have now all been deleted

He was arrested on May 13, 2022, and was sentenced to 18 months of probation in October 2023. He also had to pay $500 in fines and $500 in restitution.

Jon Bonney
Bonney — who was living in Colorado in 2021, but subsequently moved to Hayward — was in the Capitol for 12 minutes, but that was enough for police to positively identify and arrest him. Bonney was not found to have engaged in any violent acts while at or in the Capitol.

Joseph Cattani
Cattani — from Colgate — was near the first wave of people that made it into the Capitol. Court documents show he was inside for about 18 minutes total, but videos taken that day show him grabbing a police officer by the face shield and shaking their head.

Once inside, Cattani walked around before climbing out of a broken window. He was arrested in September 2023 and is awaiting trial.

Charles Walters
Walters — from Sparta — was seen on body camera footage destroying fencing near a police line, climbing the inauguration stage risers and entering the Capitol with a helmet and ballistic-style vest.

While in the Capitol, he visited the Senate Parliamentarian’s Office before turning around and leaving the building voluntarily. Walters then remained on Capitol grounds until at least 5 p.m..

He was arrested in September 2023, and is awaiting trial.

A screenshot shows a group of people standing outside next to a staircase with metal railings, with a haze obscuring a building in the background and an illustration of a circle centered on a person identified as Charles Walters.

A screenshot from a video posted to YouTube shows an individual identified as Charles Walters, outlined with a yellow circle and observed as having previously entered and exited the U.S. Capitol, among a group of people being directed away from the building by law enforcement officers on the evening of Jan. 6, 2021. (Source: U.S. Department of Justice)

Law enforcement investigations into the January 6th insurrection are ongoing, and the FBI has continued to arrest and charge individuals involved. There may be additional cases of Wisconsin residents who are arrested and prosecuted in coming months. If Trump were to return to office, he has pledged to all but drop the investigation and issue pardons to people convicted in connection with the Jan. 6 insurrection.

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