Alleged Capitol Rioter Caught on Snapchat Maps After Tipster Sent Screenshots to FBI

A Maryland man is facing several charges related to his alleged participation in the U.S. Capitol riot after being caught in part due to the maps feature on Snapchat.

Matthew Buckler has been charged with knowingly entering or remaining on restricted grounds as well as disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building, according to new court documents.

The documents were circulated on social media by Huffpost reporter Ryan Reilly and George Washington University researcher Seamus Hughes.

Capitol defendant nabbed by Snapchat Maps.

— Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) September 20, 2021

The FBI was made aware of Buckler's alleged presence at the insurrection after a tipster sent in screenshots of Buckler's Snapchat posts, the affidavit said. One of the screenshots showed an individual in a "TRUMP" baseball cap and white hoodie chanting "USA."

Another screenshot provided by the tipster showed a Snapchat heatmap displaying a bitmoji—an expressive cartoon avatar the user generally makes to represent themselves on the app—labeled "Matt" placed on top of a satellite image of the U.S. Capitol Building and grounds.

The Snapchat map showed the user posting private stories from the southwest corner of the U.S. Capitol, prosecutors said.

When authorities interviewed Buckler in late January, he told them he wore clothes at the U.S. Capitol matching the description of what was seen in the Snapchat videos. He also admitted to federal agents that he entered the building on January 6.

In May, the FBI seized Buckler's phone as a part of a search warrant. The device had seven videos that appeared to be taken from inside or around the U.S. Capitol, reportedly showing Buckler outside the Senate wing and in the Crypt located in the basement beneath the Rotunda.

In one video, according to the court documents, Buckler was chanting "Stop the Steal" along with the crowd outside the door to the Senate wing. Another recording showed him in the Crypt in which he stated multiple times, "We in this b***h."

Prosecutors also recognized Buckler in security footage of the riot provided by the United States Capitol Police (USCP). The footage reportedly showed Buckler entering the building shortly before 3 p.m. through a broken window.

After getting into the building, authorities said the security video reportedly showed Buckler turning around and waving his hands to others outside the window apparently encouraging them to enter as well.

Buckler was arrested on September 17. His next court appearance is set for November 2.

More than 600 people have been arrested so far in connection with the Capitol attack, and 115 rioters have been accused of assaulting police, according to NPR. The news organization also found that more than 70 people have pleaded guilty to one or more charges.

Newsweek reached out to the FBI for comment, but the bureau said it cannot provide any additional information.

Update (9/21/2021, 4:20 p.m. ET): This story has been updated with additional information about Buckler's arrest and court appearances.

Alleged Capitol Rioter Caught on Snapchat Maps
A Maryland man is facing several charges related to his alleged participation in the U.S. Capitol riot after being caught in part due to the maps feature on Snapchat. A large group of pro-Trump protesters stand on the East steps of the Capitol Building after storming its grounds on January 6, 2021 in Washington, D.C. Jon Cherry/Getty Images