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Husband, wife arrested in connection to Capitol riots, accused of assaulting officers

An investigator connected the Texas couple to events at the U.S. Capitol using bodycam footage, social posts and tips from the public, a complaint says.
Credit: U.S. District Attorney
Body camera footage from a Metropolitan Police Department officer on Jan. 6, 2021 appears to show Mark and Jalise Middleton.

FORESTBURG, Texas — A husband and wife from Forestburg, Texas, each face seven charges in connection to the riots at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, according to federal officials. 

Mark Middleton and Jalise Middleton were arrested on Wednesday in Texas, officials say.

The charges they face include assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers, obstruction of law enforcement, and engaging in physical violence in a restricted building.

A criminal complaint filed April 20 in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., details the case against the Middletons. 

In it, investigators describe social media posts, police officer body camera footage and tipsters who connected the husband and wife to the events at the Capitol. 

Body camera footage on Jan. 6

An FBI agent says bodycam footage from two Metropolitan Police Officers shows an assault that occurred near a bike rack barricade line on the west front of the Capitol building on Jan. 6, according to the complaint. 

Authorities say they identified a man and woman seen in the body camera physically assaulting the officers as Mark and Jalise Middleton, the document says.

Mark Middleton is seen wearing a red, white and blue "Trump" beanie, a red and white scarf, gray or silver jacket, blue jeans, Nike tennis shoes and a gray backpack. 

In the video, the complaint says, Mark Middleton can be heard yelling "F--- you" and pushing against the barricade. He also appears to grab one of the officers hand or wrist and pull him while reaching across the barricade with his other arm, the complaint says.

A woman, who is identified as Jalise Middleton, is seen repeatedly grabbing and striking the same officer with her hand. She was wearing a red, white and blue "Trump 2020" beanie, a red, white and blue scarf, gray jacket, red shirt and a gold ring, according to the document.

When another officer tries to intervene, Jalise Middleton also strikes him on the footage, according to the document. 

Just after 2:10 p.m., the document says, the first officer uses chemical spray and Mark and Jalise Middleton leave the barricade line. This happens approximately six seconds after assault allegedly began, the complaint says.

Identifying the Texas couple

Officials said Mark and Jalise Middleton were connected to events at the Capitol through social posts made on their Facebook accounts on and around Jan. 6, the complaint says.

Mark Middleton posted a video detailing some of his experience, the complaint says. In it, he said they "helped push down the barriers" and were "pepper sprayed, clubbed, and tear gassed."

The video appears to be captured on the western side of the Capitol building, near steps leading to the back. 

Mark Middleton posted a number of other photos and comments that show parts of the grounds and detail events, the complaint says. 

Jalise Middleton also posted multiple photos, including three posted around 3:57 p.m. that she claims were taken after she was pepper sprayed, according to the document. She also posted a number of comments responding to questions and sharing details of her experience, the document says.

An FBI agent interviewed multiple tipsters who said they had seen posts or heard about Jalise and Mark Middleton traveling to and taking part in the riots at the U.S. Capitol, the document says. One of those tipsters said some photos were deleted from Jalise Middleton's Facebook page about two days after Jan. 6, according to the complaint.

Investigators said they were able to identify Jalise and Mark Middleton as the people in the body camera video when compared to passport photos, the complaint says. 

They both face the following seven charges: 

  • Assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers
  • Obstruction of law enforcement during civil disorder
  • Obstruction of justice/Congress
  • Knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority
  • Disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds
  • Engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds
  • Violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds