White Supremacist Arrested after Ankle Monitor Places Him at Capitol Riots

A self-confessed white supremacist who openly discussed plotting a school shooting and killing people in a church has been charged with being involved in the attack on the Capitol after his GPS monitor placed him at the scene.

Bryan Betancur, of Silver Spring, is facing charges including unlawful activities on Capitol grounds and disorderly conduct after he was arrested in Maryland on Sunday, authorities have said.

According to an affidavit signed by FBI Special Agent Alexis Brown, Betancur admitted to law enforcement officers that he is a white supremacist and that he is a member of several white supremacy organizations.

Betancur was reported to have voiced "homicidal ideations, made comments about conducting a school shooting, and has researched mass shootings."

He also expressed support for James Fields, the white supremacist convicted for killing counter-protester Heather Heyer with his car during the neo-Nazi "Unite the Right" protests in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017.

The affidavit adds that Betancur stated he also wanted to run people over with a vehicle, kill people in a church, and had a desire to be a "lone wolf" killer.

"Betancur subsequently stated that he had changed his mind about hurting people," the FBI said.

The suspect was arrested after a GPS device he wears as part of his probation following a fourth degree burglary conviction tracked him to being at the Capitol on January 6. The GPS was able to place Betancur in the vicinity of the building from between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m.

According to the affidavit, Betancur was able to get permission to leave his home state of Maryland to travel to Washington D.C. while on probation in order to distribute bibles with an organization called Gideon International. Betancur has previously been able to travel to the capital with the group.

Betancur is also said to have violated his probation by continuing to "engage racially motivated violent extremist groups" on the internet.

An Instagram profile believed to belong to Betancur showed him posting images from Washington D.C. while wearing a T-shirt of the far-right Proud Boys group.

In the image and one other video on his Instagram, Betancur is seen flashing the OK hand gesture—a previously innocuous symbol that has been co-opted by some on the far-right as a coded message to show support for white supremacy.

Betancur is also believed to have been photographed on scaffolding erected on the western side of the Capitol Building holding the corner of a Confederate battle flag.

"Based on my training and experience, and my knowledge of the facts uncovered in this investigation to date, I believe that at no time on or before January 6, 2021, was Bryan Betancur granted permission or authorized by rule to enter restricted grounds around the Capitol, nor did he, at any time, have authorization to assemble, display flags, or parade on the Grounds or in the Capitol Building," Brown said.

The FBI has identified more than 270 suspects involved in criminal activity in and around the Capitol on January 6.

The agency is examining around 140,000 photos and videos from the scene of the attack which has been sent to them by members of the public.

Bryan Betancur
Self-professed white supremacist Bryan Betancur was arrested after his GPS monitor placed him at the Capitol during the riots on January 6. Screenshot/FBI