IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Capitol rioter's sentencing delayed as video is alleged to show him attacking police

In the video, a man believed to be Robert Maurice Reeder is seen shoving a police officer outside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

A Capitol rioter's hearing was delayed hours before he was scheduled to be sentenced after videos surfaced on social media in which he is alleged to be attacking a police officer.

The man, Robert Maurice Reeder, 55, of Maryland, had been set to appear Wednesday afternoon before U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan after he accepted a plea agreement in connection with his involvement in the Jan. 6 riot. Prosecutors had asked the judge to sentence Reeder to a fine and time in prison.

Sentencing, however, was postponed after a group of online sleuths known as "Sedition Hunters" sent the FBI new video alleged to show Reeder assaulting a Capitol police officer.

The group also posted the videos on its Twitter page. In a 21-second clip, a man the group claims is Reeder appears to shove an officer outside the Capitol. Reeder then appears to get into a scuffle with an officer before Reeder falls to the ground.

The man in the video is wearing a mask, a red "Make America Great Again" baseball hat and a gray hoodie with a blue and black jacket — the same attire Reeder is seen wearing in images included in his criminal complaint.

Sedition Hunters said they turned the videos over to federal investigators four hours before Reeder's hearing. The group did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday.

Reeder had said previously that he was not involved in the violence at the Capitol. A sentencing memorandum on his behalf said he was at home watching television when he saw that a rally would be held nearby in Washington.

He decided to go because he had "nothing better to do" and believed "that the rally would be an interesting event to attend," it said.

As Reeder got closer to the Capitol, he was hit with tear gas, according to the document. It said Reeder walked over to police officers who were standing near an open door at the Capitol and asked for water so he could rinse his eyes out.

"He asked for directions to a bathroom or water fountain," the memorandum read. "The officers were standing near the walls and neither verbally nor otherwise attempted to keep Mr. Reeder from walking into the building."

The memorandum alleged that Reeder was in the Capitol for only "a brief period of time" and repeatedly told the crowd not to damage anything. It said he started looking for a way out when others started to yell and "not act with respect."

"He does not want to be remembered as or considered one of the unlawful or violent protestors that assaulted the Capitol that day," the memorandum said.

Prosecutors responded to the memorandum by saying Reeder went around barricades and ignored alarms and tear gas to enter the Capitol. They said Reeder recorded the riot because he "was proud to be a part of it."

"The Defendant's sentencing memorandum attempts to paint a picture of the Defendant as a lost tourist, in awe of the Capitol, defending it from destruction and documenting the events of the day," prosecutors wrote in court documents. "To believe the Defendant's version of events one needs to suspend reality, ignore facts, and omit evidence."

The criminal complaint said Reeder provided investigators with a compilation video in which he said he was inside the Capitol for more than 30 minutes. It further alleged that Reeder left the building but turned around and went back in.

During his second time in the Capitol, the complaint said, he recorded a video of an officer being assaulted and then told the officer, "You need to retreat."

The complaint also said Reeder chanted alongside the crowd and recorded himself talking about the chaotic scene inside the Capitol.

"Just left the Capitol, I was one of the last people out," he said in the video, according to the criminal complaint. "I was in there for over half an hour. I got gassed several times inside the Capitol, many times outside the Capitol. Got shot with pepper balls. It was f------ nuts. We had to do ... ah ... battle with the police inside. It was crazy ... absolutely insane."

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia declined to comment on the videos or Reeder's case.

Reeder's attorney, Robert C. Bonsib, said his team received the videos only three hours before the hearing.

"We believe that there may be additional videos that will be forthcoming that may be helpful in fully explaining what occurred during the few seconds reflected in the video. After review of all the videos we will be prepared to fully discuss this incident when we next appear before Judge Hogan," he said in a statement.

Sentencing was rescheduled for Oct. 8. Reeder remains free on a personal recognizance bond, court records show.