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Ryan Kelley charged with taking part in January 6 insurrection

Daniel Boothe
Ryan Kelley exits the federal courthouse in Grand Rapids after being formally charged with taking part in the January 6 insurrection at the US Capitol.

The FBI executed a search warrant at Kelley’s home in Allendale, arrested him and transported him to Grand Rapids for his first court appearance.

Kelley repeatedly answered “understood” to the judge’s questions about knowing his rights and responsibilities now that he’s been charged with four misdemeanors – each with a penalty of up to a year in jail. His first court appearance was in Grand Rapids, even though the charges were filed in Washington D.C.

The government’s case is built on tips as well as video and photos taken during the attack on the Capitol. The riot was an effort to stop the certification of the November presidential election won by Joe Biden. The allegations include that Kelley was among those who incited violence and helped lead insurrectionists into the Capitol.

From the U.S. Justice Department’s complaint:

“Due to the nature of the events at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, and the intense news media and online amateur journalist coverage, many private individuals were able to review a large amount of photos and videos produced that day. In this case, the FBI received multiple tips regarding Ryan Kelley’s presence at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.”

The judge allowed Kelley to leave without posting bond. But a post Thursday on Kelley’s campaign Facebook page said: “political prisoner.”

Kelley is one of five candidates whose names will appear on the August GOP primary ballot.

A statement from Michigan Republican Party Chairman Ron Weiser called the charges “political theater.”

“Democrats are weaponizing our justice system in an unprecedented way against their political opponents,” he said.

The arrest also came on the same day that congressional hearings opened on the January 6 attack.

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