CAPITOL RIOT: These are the 11 South Carolinians facing charges in the Jan 6 insurrection

State News

FILE: Rioters loyal to then-President Donald Trump outside of U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington. Even as the first of the more than 500 federal Capitol riot defendants have begun to plead guilty, scores of suspects remain unidentified, reflecting the massive scale of the Justice Department’s investigation and the grueling work authorities still face to track everyone down. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WCBD) – On January 5, 2021, John and Stacie Getsinger left their Hanahan home on a charter bus full of other South Carolinians bound for Washington, D.C. to hear then-President Trump speak. Also heading from the Palmetto State to the nation’s Capitol was a Citadel cadet, an alleged ANTIFA imposter, and a self-proclaimed sleeper agent. They were all ready to protest the certification of what they perceived as a fraudulent election. They are now among the 11 South Carolinians arrested for their roles in a deadly insurrection.

One year later, these are the South Carolinians being prosecuted for their involvement, and where their cases stand:

John and Stacie Getsinger (Hanahan):

The FBI was tipped off by multiple people about the Getsingers’ actions on January 6. Witnesses sent screenshots of social media posts made by the couple, both planning and reflecting on the trip.

Surveillance footage appeared to show the couple inside the Capitol, which was supported by cell phone geolocation data. Ultimately, they pled guilty to one count each of parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building. Sentencing is set for April 21, 2022.

Elias Irizarry and Elliot Bishai (York County):

Elias Irizarry was halfway through his freshman year at The Citadel when he and his friend from home, Elliot Bishai, stormed the Capitol. The two men, who served in a Civil Air Patrol unit, were identified to the FBI by others associated with that unit.

Documents | Elias Irizarry at the U.S. Capitol

Surveillance footage appeared to show the two entering the building through a broken window, and a family member of Bishai told investigators that he took selfies inside the Capitol.

Both men have entered pleas of not guilty on any charges and a status conference is set for February 23, 2022.

Andrew Hatley (Newberry):

Andrew Hatley commemorated his illegal tour of the Capitol by taking a selfie with a statue of South Carolina’s own John C. Calhoun. Hatley shared the photo with a friend, who forwarded it to the FBI.

After initially trying to deny his involvement and claim the photo showed someone who looked like him, Hately admitted to being there. He pled guilty to parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building. Hatley was fined $500 and sentenced to three years probation.

Paul Colbath (Fort Mill):

The FBI was tipped off about Paul Colbath’s involvement in the Capitol riot after he allegedly bragged about participating. When interviewed by investigators, Colbath was much more reserved, telling agents he entered through an open door and only stumbled into an office as he was trying to escape what he assumed was tear gas filling the halls. Surveillance photos appear to show him in and around the Capitol.

Colbath via DOJ

Although Colbath insisted he didn’t think he did anything wrong, he said he still felt guilty about being there. He was indicted on multiple federal charges including entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly or disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building and parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building. A plea agreement hearing is set for January 10, 2022.

Nicholas Languerand (Little River):

Nicholas Languerand memorialized January 6, 2021 in an Instagram post, which prompted an FBI investigation that led to his eventual arrest.

Languerand via DOJ

“Remember this day forever. I love you guys,” the caption read, alongside a photo of Languerand and a giant crowd.

Investigators recognized his outfit, which they had seen in surveillance footage of him throwing a large traffic barrier, a stick, and a can of pepper spray at officers.

Languerand pled guilty to assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers using a dangerous weapon. A sentencing hearing is set for January 26, 2022.

William Norwood (Greer):

William Norwood bragged to family members about his plan to dress in all black and disguise himself as a member of ANTIFA so he could “get away with anything” during the insurrection.

He also stole an officer’s riot gear and sent photos of himself wearing it to a family group text.

Those messages were shared with the FBI, who pinpointed Norwood’s cell phone location to be inside the Capitol on January 6. Surveillance photos also appeared to show Norwood inside the building.

Norwood has pled not guilty, and a status conference is set for January 13, 2022.

James Lollis and Derek Gunby (Greer, Anderson):

James Lollis and Derek Cooper Gunby traveled together to D.C. on January 5. They checked in to a Virginia hotel, and the next morning headed to hear President Trump speak. Both men marched from the speech to the Capitol and entered the building with the crowd.

Gunby and Lollis via DOJ

Lollis apparently stuck something to a wall inside the Capitol. He pled guilty to parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a capitol building. A sentencing hearing is set for February 17, 2022.

Gunby, a former satellite communications non-commissioned officer in the U.S. Army and self-proclaimed sleeper agent, livestreamed a recap of the day after leaving the Capitol.

Gunby has pled not guilty to any charges. A status conference is set for January 25, 2022.

George Tenney III (Anderson):

George Tenney was preparing for violence before he even arrived in D.C.

According to FBI documents, Tenney posted to Facebook “it’s starting to look like we may siege the capital building [sic] and [C]ongress if the electoral votes don’t go right.  We are forming plans for every scenario.”

Tenney via DOJ

Tenney and another man were caught on video forcing open the doors to the East Rotunda “despite police efforts to keep them closed,” and helped the crowd get in. Tenney also “grabbed an employee of the House Sergeant at Arms, locked arms with a U.S. Capitol Police officer, and pushed another Capitol Police officer. Tenney and Youngers eventually retreated into the Rotunda,” according to FBI documents.

Tenney was indicted on three felony charges including assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers, civil disorder, and obstructing an official proceeding, as well as six misdemeanor charges. He pled not guilty. A status conference is set for January 12, 2022.

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