Jan. 6 Defendant Blames Stephen Colbert for Negative Media Coverage

An attorney representing Joseph Biggs, a Proud Boys organizer linked to the deadly January 6 Capitol riot, has argued that Biggs' trial should be moved out of Washington D.C. due to negative coverage of the far-right group by CBS' The Late Show With Stephen Colbert and MSNBC's Morning Joe.

Biggs is charged with conspiracy, as well as obstructing an official Congress proceeding, illegal entry and disorderly conduct on restricted Capitol grounds. He was arrested in Florida in January 2021, after the FBI alleged that members of the nationalist group were using walkie-talkie-style devices that could enable communication during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on January 6 of that year.

In a statement issued Tuesday, his attorney said: "In the view of the increased and unquestionable spectacular 24/7 negative press and media coverage about the fraternity known as the Proud Boys, from Morning Joe to Stephen Colbert's Late Show, and coupled with this week's televised hearings of the House Select Committee on January 6, all of which continue to saturate the jury pool of media-obsessive Washington, D.C., defendant Biggs respectively moves to join defendant Tarrio's May 2, 2022 Motion to Transfer Venue (ECF 349) in all respects applicable to Biggs."

Newsweek has contacted Colbert's representatives for comment.

The attorney is referring to Enrique Tarrio, the former leader of the Proud Boys, who is also on trial for his alleged role in storming the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. Both Biggs, Tarrio and fellow Proud Boy Dominic Pezzola last week pleaded not guilty to seditious conspiracy charges filed against them in connection with the riot.

The unrest broke out after then-President Donald Trump gave a speech earlier that day claiming the election result was fraudulent, and a large mob – many of them Trump supporters – stormed the Capitol, as Congress was formalizing Joe Biden's victory.

On Monday, the Democratic-led House Select Committee investigating the riot held its second public hearing to reveal its findings. The panel on Monday focused on the so-called "Big Lie" — the baseless conspiracy that the 2020 election (which Trump lost to Joe Biden) was stolen from the former president.

The committee looked to show that Trump's pushing of election fraud claims was seemingly a plot to raise money from his supporters. According to the panel, Trump and his allies raised $250 million in donations that they said were going to fight legal battles to overturn Biden's victory but went mainly to Trump's "Save America" PAC group.

The FBI alleged that Biggs was one of the first people to enter the Capitol during the riot, and that he is seen in video seconds after someone who appears to be Pezzola led the smashing of a window on the Senate side of the building with a riot shield.

The House Select Committee will hold more hearings later this month.

January 6 Capitol riot
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