Seattle man among those charged in violent pro-Trump insurrection at U.S. Capitol
Mark Leffingwell, 51, of Seattle is accused of assaulting a U.S. Capitol police officer amid the violent siege in which right-wing extremists broke into the Capitol Building, in an attempt to stop Congress from certifying Joe Biden's presidential victory over President Trump.
He also faces federal trespassing and disorderly conduct charges.
Leffingwell punched an officer with a closed fist several times while inside the Capitol Building on January 6, after being "deterred from advancing further into the building," according to a criminal complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
"I was struck in the helmet that I was wearing and in the chest," wrote officer Daniel Amendola. "Working with other officers, I was able to gain control over Leffingwell, who attempted to struggle while being detained."
Leffingwell was released on his personal recognizance after appearing before a federal judge on January 8, said Emily Langlie, a spokesperson with the U.S. Attorney's Western Washington office. He will be required to call in to pre-trial court proceedings in Washington, D.C.
The attack on the Capitol left five dead, including a police officer who died the following day from injuries sustained while engaging with rioters.
Assaulting a federal law enforcement officer could carry a penalty of between up to one year in prison and up to 20 years in prison, depending on the severity of the assault and whether a weapon is used. The criminal complaint against Leffingwell does not allege the use of a weapon or significant bodily harm.
Insurrection fallout around Seattle
Leffingwell is among a handful of Seattle-area residents who face fallout from the insurrection at the nation's capitol.
The Washington Medical Commission announced that it has been made aware of a Seattle doctor who reportedly filmed herself talking about storming the capitol. The commission has received so many complaints, that it pinned a tweet addressing the doctor to the top of its Twitter page.
UW Medicine also released a statement making clear that the doctor in question is not an employee of its organization.
At least two Seattle police officers are also under investigation by the Office of Police Accountability, after it was discovered they attended the pro-Trump rally in D.C., ahead of the insurrection. Investigators are looking into whether the officers engaged in any activities that violate Seattle Police Department policies. Interim Police Chief Adrian Diaz said that if any Seattle officers were involved in storming the Capitol, "I will immediately terminate them."