14 Michigan men charged in Jan. 6 insurrection: What we know

Michiganders among hundreds facing charges in deadly riots at US Capitol

FILE - Rioters loyal to President Donald Trump rally at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 6, 2021. A new poll shows that a year after the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, only about 4 in 10 Republicans recall the attack by supporters of former President Donald Trump as very violent or extremely violent. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File) (Jose Luis Magana, Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

A year has passed since rioters violently stormed the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election, and several of them are from Michigan.

While members of Congress were meeting to certify the votes declaring Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 election, supporters of ex-President Donald Trump breached the Capitol building, with many violently attacking law enforcement and sending lawmakers to run and hide in fear. The mayhem left five people dead in the immediate aftermath, and hundreds of people are facing charges and millions of dollars in property damage.

Despite numerous ballot recounts, investigations and failed lawsuits proving otherwise, some Trump supporters falsely believed the presidential election was fraudulent and that Trump was the real victor. U.S. and election officials across the nation, including Trump’s own attorney general, found that there was no evidence of widespread fraud, and that the 2020 election was of the most secure election in the country’s history.

Still, after Biden’s victory was declared, Trump told his followers to “fight like hell” to stop the certification of votes favoring Biden, and said that he would march with them to the Capitol -- though he did not. Following the aftermath of the Jan. 6 insurrection, Congress has been investigating the incident alongside federal officials, working to identify those responsible for the attack and those who participated in it.

Within the last year, 14 men from Michigan have been charged in connection with the insurrection -- here’s what we know about their cases.

Logan Barnhart

40-year-old Logan Barnhart, from Haslett, was arrested by federal law enforcement in August 2021 on six charges.

Barnhart is accused of dragging a Metropolitan police officer down the Capitol steps during the insurrection. Officials also say he used a baton, flag pole and crutch to beat officers.

Barnhart is also accused of engaging in physical violence in a restricted area as well as disorderly and disruptive conduct.

See more here.

Timothy Boughner

Romeo man Timothy Boughner is charged with engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds, civil disorder, and assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers with a dangerous weapon, officials said. He reportedly faces 9 charges in total.

Video shows Boughner in a crowd of rioters at the Capitol and using a chemical spray against officers attempting to secure the building, the government said. He is also accused of using a bike rack to assault officers.

The government added that in a Feb. 17 social media post, Boughner stated: “I have to share. My life has not been the same since this day … I still don’t know how I ended up on the capital steps having a pepper spray fight with the capital police.”

See more here.

Trevor Brown

Novi man Trevor Brown is accused of breaking five federal laws, including violent entry on Capitol grounds, in connection with Jan. 6, 2021.

In video evidence, Brown can reportedly be seen grabbing a bullhorn while in front of the police line and shouting during the assault. Investigators call the incident the “Heave Ho,” which Brown referenced in an Instagram post. Police said Brown coordinated the attack, which nearly led to an officer being crushed to death.

Moments later, video shows Brown motioning for another shield. According to the FBI, he is the person holding one of two shields that helped rioters to stomp and kick officers inside the tunnel.

See more here.

Jeremiah Caplinger

Taylor man Jeremiah Caplinger has been charged with a version of unlawful entry or disorderly conduct in connection with the Jan. 6 riots.

He pleaded guilty to parading in the Capitol building and faces six months in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Karl Dresch

Karl Dresch, 40, of Calumet, has been charged with violent entry and other crimes in connection with the insurrection investigation.

According to the FBI, Dresch posted several photos and messages, and joked about the use of tear gas by police at the Capitol.

Dresch also reportedly posted a photo of himself holding a Trump flag while standing next to a statue of John C. Calhoun of South Carolina, vice president from 1825 through 1832, who defended slavery.

Dresch was the first of the Michigan men charged in the attack to be sentenced. He took a plea deal to parading in the Capitol and was sentenced to time served.

Read more here.

Michael Foy

Wixom man Michael Joseph Foy has been charged with attacking a police officer with a hockey stick during the deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol.

Court documents said that Foy traveled to D.C. to attend former President Donald Trump’s rally and then moved to the Capitol.

Federal authorities said during the insurrection, Foy was the most violent of all the participants. The Wixom man, a marine, used a hockey stick to beat officers -- an assault that was recorded on a body camera.

The video referenced by the FBI can be viewed here.

Foy has been charged with the following:

  • Knowingly enter or remain in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority
  • Obstruction of law enforcement
  • Forcibly assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, or interfere with any officer of the United States
  • Aiding and abetting
  • Obstruct, influence, or impede any official proceeding of Congress

If convicted, Foy could face 20 years in prison.

See more here.

Daniel Herendeen

Chesterfield man Daniel Herendeen pleaded guilty to entering and staying in the U.S. Capitol during the riot with another Macomb County man, Robert Schornack, who pleaded guilty to the same charge in November.

Images and text messages from court documents show Herendeen planning to attend the rally that would eventually lead to the attack.

Herendeen was also captured on video inside the Capitol. While the video has not yet been released, there are still images in court documents that show him in the Capitol’s Crypt in body armor, in addition to a military style backpack, black goggles, a mask and a baseball hat.

Many of the videos were posted by Herendeen on his own Facebook page.

Read more here.

Justin Jersey

Flint man Justin Jersey has been charged in connection with the violent Jan. 6 riots.

Authorities say Jersey was captured on video using a police baton to beat officers at the Capitol.

James Mels

Shelby Township man James Mes, 40, has been charged with knowingly entering a restricted building, in addition to violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds in connection with the attack.

In an interview with the FBI, Mels told investigators that he entered the Capitol to speak with an officer and give them a copy of the Constitution to “have his voice heard.” The 56-year-old man said he traveled to D.C. for the Jan. 6 rally with 11 others after meeting them in online forums -- which were used to spread the lie that the 2020 election was stolen, and included language common to election conspiracies. Mels said he was led inside the Capitol by a friend that day.

Officials found several photos from the insurrection on Mels’ phone during their investigation, including a selfie of him inside the Capitol.

Learn more here.

Anthony Puma

Brownstown Township man Anthony Puma is accused of scaling a wall outside of the U.S. Capitol and entering the building through a window.

Puma faces several charges, including obstruction of Congress and violent entry and disorderly conduct on the U.S. Capitol grounds.

Robert Schornak

Roseville man Robert “Bobby” Schornak is accused of traveling to Washington, D.C. with Daniel Herendeen (above) for the insurrection. He has been charged with obstructing Congress, violent entry to the Capitol and other crimes.

Schornak pleaded guilty to entering and remaining in a restricted building and is facing up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

In videos handed over to the court, the Macomb County man can be seen inside of the Capitol during the attack. According to court documents, Schornak admitted to stealing an American flag from the Senate chambers, and planned to wave it from scaffolding outside the building.

Learn more here.

Jeremy Sorvisto

Hancock man Jeremy Sorvisto has been charged with a version of unlawful entry or disorderly conduct in connection with the Jan. 6 riots.

He pleaded guilty to parading in the Capitol building and faces six months in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Steven Thurlow

Steven Thurlow, a 50-year-old U.S. Army veteran from St. Clair Shores, was arrested in June last year in connection with the Jan. 6 siege.

The FBI says a tip identified Thurlow as someone who participated in the insurrection, making several social media posts about it. According to court filings, the man was arrested in Michigan and charged in Washington D.C. with the following crimes:

  • Knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building or grounds without
  • Lawful authority, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or
  • Grounds without lawful authority, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, and
  • Parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building

A 15-page affidavit from the FBI includes a photo from Thurlow’s Facebook page that showed him in camouflaged tactical gear with a “Boogaloo” patch and a gasmask, armed with a gun and a riffle. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, boogaloo is a term “used by extremists to signify a coming civil war and/or collapse of society.”

The caption on the photo was: “Ahh nothing like a new pair of 511′s and fresh set of level IV SAPI’s in the plate carrier to go ‘peacefully protest’ with.”

Video footage reportedly captured Thurlow inside the Capitol, recording the incident on his phone.

Read more here.

Anthony Williams

Southgate man Anthony Williams is being charged with disorderly conduct and trying to obstruct official proceedings in connection with the insurrection.

Investigators say Williams shared photos of the riots and from inside the Capitol building on Facebook before deleting them -- though officials were still able to obtain the media. The FBI said Williams wrote on Facebook “We took this (expletive) building,” and took part in something he called “Storm the Swamp.”

Learn more here.


Related: ‘Felt firsthand the venom of that mob’: Where things stand as anniversary of Capitol siege approaches


Related: Washington, DC, sues Proud Boys, Oath Keepers over Jan. 6


About the Author:

Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.