Missouri man faces federal charges tied to Capitol breach
O’FALLON, Mo. (AP) — A St. Louis-area man is the third Missourian facing federal charges in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.
Paul S. Westover of Lake St. Louis made his initial court appearance Thursday on a felony count of impeding law enforcement officers. He also is charged with three misdemeanors accusing him of entering a restricted building, disorderly conduct impeding government business, and disruptive conduct in the Capitol.
Westover was released on his own recognizance. He is banned from possessing firearms and from contacting potential witnesses or victims.
Hundreds of supporters of former President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol after Trump spoke at a rally, forcing lawmakers inside to go into hiding. A Capitol police officer was among five people who died.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that Westover is a 52-year-old technical recruiter and said police and the FBI searched his home Thursday.
Venton Blandin, spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in St. Louis, said the case is sealed and he could not provide any details about the allegations.
Westover’s attorney, Joseph Hogan, did not immediately respond to a phone message seeking comment.
Two other Missourians have been charged in the riot.
Emily Hernandez, 21, of Sullivan, is charged with misdemeanors. Several people identified Hernandez as the woman seen in a video holding a broken part of sign that hung over House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office.
Zachary Martin is charged with engaging in illegal activities on Capitol grounds, disorderly conduct and demonstrating inside the Capitol. Several of Martin’s Facebook friends tipped off the agency that they had watched parts of his livestream from the Capitol.