New York Man Arrested in Capitol Riot Claims Police Treated Them 'Like Animals'

A New York construction company owner who was arrested during the Capitol riot in Washington, D.C. on January 6 has criticized police, saying they treated protesters "like animals."

The riot unfolded after President Donald Trump held a rally nearby, once again claiming without evidence that the election results were invalid. His supporters then descended on the Capitol in an attempt to disrupt a session of Congress that would formalize President-elect Joe Biden's victory in the November 3 election. Five people died in the siege; four protesters and a police officer.

The outgoing president is facing a historic second impeachment after being accused of inciting the violence on January 6. On Tuesday, House Democrats formerly charged Trump with one count of "incitement of insurrection."

The Associated Press reviewed social media posts, voter registrations, court files and other public records for more than 120 people facing criminal charges related to the Capitol unrest.

The analysis found that many of the rioters had used social media after the November 3 election to retweet baseless claims by the president that the election result was a fraud. Some of them had openly threatened violence against lawmakers they deemed not to be loyal to Trump.

William Arthur Leary, who owns a construction company in Utica, New York, was among those arrested for the violence last week. The Trump supporter told the news wire on Monday that he doesn't trust mainstream media and prefers Infowars, the far-right conspiracy site run by Alex Jones.

He denied that he ever set foot in the Capitol building. He said he was detained for more than 24 hours, during which time his mobile phone was seized.

"They [the police] treated us like animals," he said. "They took all our phones. I didn't get to make a phone call to tell anybody where I was."

At the detention center, Leary claimed to see a woman crying after not being allowed to translate for her Russian-speaking mother. Both women have been charged with violating curfew and unlawful entry. Newsweek has contacted Capitol Police for comment on Leary's allegations.

The daughter in question, Kristina Malimon, 28, traveled to Washington, D.C. from Portland, Oregon. She is the vice chairwoman of the Young Republicans of Oregon, according to the division's website. The group confirmed her arrest in a statement on its Facebook page last Friday, but said it would be "inappropriate" to comment.

Malimon has been seen in photos posing with Donald Trump Jr. and Roger Stone, the president's former adviser who was convicted of lying to Congress but was pardoned by Trump on December 24.

Along with the arrests following the riot last week, two Capitol Police officers have been suspended and at least 10 more are under investigation for their behavior. The FBI is also investigating the incident and members of Congress have promised probes.

A slew of businesses have cut ties with the outgoing president after the riots, including Deutsche Bank, Coca-Cola and the Marriott hotel chain.

Capitol police DC
Members of the National Guard and the Washington D.C. police attempt to keep demonstrators away from the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC. Donald Trump supporters gathered in the nation's capital to protest the ratification of President-elect Joe Biden's Electoral College victory over President Donald Trump in the 2020 election. Samuel Corum/Getty