“Mr. Mehaffie didn’t harm any police officer and was encouraging others not to do anything of a violent nature,” Lopez previously said. A message to Lopez Wednesday afternoon wasn’t immediately returned.
According to a release from prosecutors, Mehaffie was with the crowd on the lower west terrace of the U.S. Capitol Building and can be seen in footage “walking up the exterior terrace stairs and into the tunnel as part of the first group of individuals to attempt to breach the Capitol through that entrance.”
“Mehaffie is seen at approximately 2:42 p.m. standing outside the first set of double doors repeatedly using his fist to pound on the unbroken glass,” the DOJ said. “Moments later, another rioter used a makeshift weapon to break the glass window out of the door that Mehaffie was pounding. Mehaffie was the first to walk through the first set of doors and open a second set of doors where U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) and Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) officers had formed a human barricade to protect the entrance from being breached. As Mehaffie held the door open, other rioters began attacking the USCP and MPD officers with their hands and makeshift weapons, including flag poles.”
The federal prosecutors then said Mehaffie exited the tunnel at 2:51 p.m. and climbed up on a raised platform and stood above the crowd for 26 minutes “and helped to coordinate the mob’s actions by attempting to organize and direct individuals in and around the tunnel.”
“Security footage captured him repeatedly using his arms to direct the mob and assisting members of the crowd as they passed items back and forth in the tunnel including riot shields stolen from law enforcement,” the DOJ said in a release. “Open-source video captured Mehaffie shouting, ‘If you are going in, get on this side!’ while pointing to the right side of the tunnel. He additionally directed rioters to ‘push, push!’”
“At approximately 3:18 p.m., law enforcement successfully pushed the mob back out of the tunnel and onto the terrace. Mehaffie remained in the elevated position and physically resisted the officers’ efforts to move him. Mehaffie finally stepped down onto the terrace after multiple attempts by officers,” the DOJ said.
Mehaffie owned and operated the now-closed Belmont Gym in the 600 block of Watervliet Avenue in the Belmont business district.
Mehaffie also renovated an adjacent building that he was rented out to Turnbuckles & Brews, which used it for wrestling matches. That tenant has since moved out.
Montgomery County real estate records show Kam Gym Company LLC owns 628 to 636 Watervliet Ave. The LLC’s address matches Mehaffie’s listed home address on old police and local court records.
Mehaffie also was previously accused in federal court of illegally blocking entrances to abortion clinics. A mistrial was declared in 1999.
A next court date in the case was not listed on the case’s docket Wednesday afternoon.