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Oregon brothers arrested on federal charges in connection with deadly US Capitol riot

Prosecutors say Matthew Klein and Jonathanpeter Klein entered the Capitol minutes after it was breached, and later tried to break in through another entrance.

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Portland FBI office on Wednesday announced two Oregon brothers have been arrested in connection with the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6.

Matthew Klein, 24, was arrested in Sherwood, and Jonathanpeter Klein, 21, was arrested near Heppner on Tuesday without incident, the FBI said. Federal officials said Jonathanpeter is a self-identified member of the far-right Proud Boys. The brothers face the following charges:

  • Conspiracy
  • Obstruction of an official proceedings and aiding and abetting
  • Obstruction of law enforcement during civil disorder and aiding and abetting
  • Destruction of government property and aiding and abetting
  • Entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds
  • Disorderly conduct in a restricted building or grounds

According to federal prosecutors, the Kleins flew from Portland to Philadelphia on Jan. 4, two days before the violent insurrection led by supporters of then-President Donald Trump that resulted in the deaths of five people and left 139 police officers injured. The riot, which occurred as Congress was certifying the Electoral College vote for the 2020 presidential election, was spurred on by false claims of widespread voter fraud and a rigged election.

Credit: US Marshals
Matthew Klein (left) and Jonathanpeter Klein (right)

At the destructive rally, federal prosecutors cited photos they said show the brothers on a wall in a restricted area of the Capitol grounds. They said video shows Matthew Klein helping others climb a police barricade to ascend the wall. The brothers entered the Capitol minutes after it was first breached, with Jonathanpeter celebrating with other people who had forced their way inside, prosecutors said in court filings.

After exiting the Capitol, prosecutors said the brothers wrenched open a secure door on the north side of the building, forcing police officers to fend off the brothers, and another wave of rioters who were attempting to break into the Capitol.

Credit: Andrew Selsky, Associated Press
A protester carries a Proud Boys banner in front of the Oregon State Capitol in Salem, Ore. on Sept. 7, 2020.

The alleged actions at the U.S. Capitol are not the first time the brothers have been linked to pro-Trump and Proud Boys demonstrations. Federal prosecutors said Matthew and Jonathanpeter were part of clashing rallies between Trump supporters and Black Lives Matter demonstrators at the Oregon Capitol in Salem on Sept. 7 and at Delta Park in North Portland on Sept. 26. Matthew Klein was charged with two counts of possession of a loaded firearm in public in connection with the Delta Park rallies.

A federal judge determined Matthew Klein should remain detained because he’s a flight risk and danger to the community. Prosecutors also argue Jonathanpeter should remain detained for the same reasons.