jorgeriley
“I’m in the front where do you think I am,” Jorge Riley said from inside the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.
Who is Jorge Riley?
Self-described Native man at U.S. Capitol riot
Friday, January 15, 2021
Indianz.Com

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Who is Jorge Riley? The self-described right-wing Native Republican took part in the violent riot at the U.S. Capitol on January 6.

Riley definitely played the part. Like many in the crowd, he was dressed in a distinctive fashion, with feathers tied to his long, darkly colored hair.

“We pushed our way to Nancy Pelosi’s office,” Riley proudly said in a video taken on the steps of the building. He noted that it was his first visit to the nation’s capital.

“We broke windows,” he said of his actions. “We pushed our way in and then we kept going further and further.”

Riley has been active in the California Republican Assembly and the Sacramento Republican Assembly. The first group denounced him for his role in the mob, whose goal was to keep Donald Trump in office even though he lost the presidential election.

“It’s freezing outside but I’m here cause my President called me,” Riley said in a social media post from the National Mall on the morning of that fateful day. The photo showed him with black streaks on his face, in some form of warpaint.

After hearing Trump speak, Riley and the nascent mob made their way to the U.S. Capitol, which houses the legislative branch of the U.S. government. He was soon bragging to his followers that he was at the center of the action.

“I’m in the front where do you think I am,” Riley told those watching the violence unfold in real time.

Once inside, it was clear Riley made it to sensitive locations in a place where the public is normally not welcome. He posted photos from various parts of the building, including the National Statuary Hall, whose collection includes representatives of prominent Native figures.

He also ended up in the office of Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-California), the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. One photo he shared showed the Democrat’s name and title on a large wooden sign.

“Does this mean I took my land back?” Riley posted once inside Pelosi’s office. He was invoking a popular slogan aimed at returning stolen land to tribal nations, as if to prove his Native bonafides to those following online.

Several photos Riley posted are consistent with those from the Speaker’s Office, down to the railing and the iconic views of the U.S. Capitol Grounds, where the inauguration of Democrat President-elect Joe Biden is set to take place on January 20. The structure where the oath of office will be administered is visible throughout the images.

“What do you think I came for?”: Riley said in the caption of a photo that showed the scaffolding for the inauguration.

Other photos showed the National Museum of the American Indian, where the National Native American Veterans Memorial was recently dedicated to honor the large numbers of American Indians and Alaska Natives who have served the nation since colonial times. According to Riley’s own social media, he too served in the U.S. military.

“Hey We’re storming the Capitol…. what are you doing?” Riley boasted on January 6.

Once the violent siege was all said and done, Riley shared his exploits on the steps of the building. He told another person that he had been sprayed with a chemical agent and with fire extinguisher foam.

He told the person: “Luckily I didn’t get it on my jacket.”

“But my hair did get messed up,” Riley added, with his makeup all but washed away from his face.

By the end of the day, Riley found himself back on the National Mall. In another photo he shared, he can be seen drinking an alcoholic beverage.

“I don’t like this town,” he wrote.

Riley describes himself as a “French-speaking Native American Messianic Jewish right-wing conservative Republican.” However, he has provided scant information about supposed tribal affiliation, if any.

Riley did not immediately respond to a request for comment placed through social media.

The exchange with Riley was apparently posted on a social media account by a person with sympathies to Trump and the Republican Party. This person has since deleted the account where the video was shared.

The video has since been widely viewed after being posted online by someone else who captured it from the original social media account.

The attack on January 6 contributed to the deaths of five people, including a law enforcement officer. Federal authorities are investigating the death of Brian David Sicknick, who was 42 years old.

“My heart is with the family of Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who died defending our nation’s temple of democracy,” Rep. Deb Haaland (D-New Mexico), a citizen of the Pueblo of Laguna, said on January 8. “We must honor his life by holding those who attacked him & our Capitol accountable.”

The Department of Justice has been taking an aggressive role in bringing cases against those involved in the violence. As of early Friday evening, criminal dockets for nearly 50 cases involving more than 70 people have been posted online.

All of the cases are being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Columbia, according to the department.

“We will have no tolerance whatsoever for any attempts to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power on January 20th that our Constitution calls for,” Acting U.S. Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen said in a statement on Wednesday. “We will have no tolerance for any attempts to forcefully occupy government buildings.”

“There is no excuse for violence, vandalism, or any other form of lawlessness,” Rosen said.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is actively seeking tips for those wanted in connection with the violence last week. Information can be submitted online at tips.fbi.gov. The agency can also be reached by phone at 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-‪800-225-5324).