Ex-Florida police officer arrested after live-streaming Capitol riots

<p>Nicholes Lents, a former Miami cop, was arrested by FBI based on a Facebook live he posted from the Capitol building on 6 January </p> (Screengrab/Video )

Nicholes Lents, a former Miami cop, was arrested by FBI based on a Facebook live he posted from the Capitol building on 6 January

(Screengrab/Video )

A former Florida cop who entered the US Capitol with the rioters and live streamed the trespass on Facebook from inside the building, has now been arrested.

Nicholes Lentz, 41, was arrested on Friday on charges of entering a restricted building and disorderly conduct, same as other rioters who were identified in the mob that entered the Capitol building on 6 January.

The FBI affidavit quoted byThe Miami Herald states that Mr Lentz posted a video where he can be seen saying: “America has spoken. You cannot stop millions of people.”

“You can’t. It’s impossible. America has a voice, we give them the power, we give the power, the people give the power. And we’re here to take it back,” he went on to say.

Mr Lentz was associated with the Miami beach police department till August, 2020, and wasn’t a sworn officer at the time of the riot.

He also says: “We’re not here to hurt any cops, of course. I love my boys in blue, but this is overwhelming for them. There’s no way they can hold us back.”

The FBI interviewed Mr Lentz at his residence on Friday, the newspaper reported, quoting the affidavit, where he admitted to entering the Capitol during the riots along with the mob.

Mr Lentz reportedly told the FBI that he entered the Capitol building through the front door and stayed on the ground floor, remaining there for about two hours. He also denied committing any acts of violence and wasn’t charged with doing so.

“Lentz believed no one at the US Capitol seemed concerned about trespassing, nor were there any warning signs regarding trespassing,” the FBI affidavit says.

Over 260 people have been arrested and charged for crimes related to the deadly Capitol riot where five people, including a police officer, lost their lives. Several current and former members of the military have also been charged for crimes of trespassing.

The FBI is still trying to identify people in the mob with the help of photos and videos available online.

Mr Lintz was presented in court via Zoom in the southern district of Florida on Friday where his bail bond was set at $25,000. His next hearing is set for 26 February, the report said.

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