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Capitol riot defendant planned to kill FBI agents who investigated him, unsealed filing alleges

Edward Kelley, 33, of Tennessee is accused of planning to kill the federal agents who worked on his investigation and attack the FBI’s field office in Knoxville.

A Tennessee man who was previously charged in connection with the Capitol riot is now facing conspiracy and other charges after allegedly obtaining a copy of a list of law enforcement personnel who played a role in his criminal investigation and discussing plans to kill them, according to a court filing unsealed Friday.

The criminal complaint against Edward Kelley, 33, of Maryville says he obtained the names of law enforcement personnel involved in the probe that led to his initial arrest, and discussed plans to kill them and attack the FBI's field office in Knoxville. Austin Carter, 26, of Knoxville is listed as a co-defendant.

The pair was charged with conspiracy, retaliating against a federal official, interstate communication of a threat, and solicitation to commit a crime of violence.

Kelley and Carter made their initial appearance in federal court in Knoxville on Friday.

Kelley was already facing charges in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after he was arrested in Knoxville on May 5 on allegations that he assaulted a law enforcement officer during the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol. He was released a week later on a personal recognizance bond.

Edward Kelly, 33, on Jan. 5, 2021.
Edward Kelley, 33, on Jan. 5, 2021.FBI

According to the new court filing, the FBI's Knoxville office had opened an investigation and assigned agents to Kelley's case after receiving information about his potential involvement at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

A cooperating witness earlier this week presented authorities with a printed document including about 37 names, positions and in some cases phone numbers of law enforcement personnel involved in the criminal investigation, the filing states. The list also identified which officers were present when Kelley was arrested in May, according to the filing.

The witness allegedly told investigators that Kelley discussed collecting intelligence on law enforcement involved in the case and shared plans to kill personnel on the list, saying, “With us being such a small group, we will mainly conduct recon missions and assassination missions.”

Both Kelley and Carter have been detained. Carter has a detention hearing scheduled for Wednesday.

Marina Medvin, who has been representing Kelley in the Jan. 6 charges, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Medvin on Friday filed a motion seeking to withdraw as Kelley's attorney.

More than 850 defendants have been arrested on Jan. 6 charges ranging from misdemeanor parading to felony seditious conspiracy.