Feds charge Flint man with assaulting officers during U.S. Capitol siege

Robert Snell
The Detroit News

A Flint man dressed in a University of Michigan hoodie assaulted police officers with a baton during the Jan. 6 siege at the U.S. Capitol, according to a federal indictment Thursday.

Justin Jersey, 31, is facing six charges, including assault, civil disorder, breaking into a restricted building, disorderly and disruptive conduct, violent entry and engaging in physical violence, according to a petition filed in federal court in Detroit. The assault charges are the most serious, punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison.

Justin Jersey

Jersey is at least the 13th person from Michigan charged in connection with a siege involving hundreds of supporters of President Donald Trump motivated by unfounded claims of voter fraud. The largest concentration of defendants from Michigan — four — are from Macomb County.

Jersey made a brief appearance Thursday in federal court and is being held without bond pending transfer to federal court in Washington, D.C. His lawyer Russell Perry could not be reached for comment immediately Thursday.

Nationally, more than 676 people have been charged with crimes, according to a database created by the Program on Extremism at George Washington University.

The FBI released a video showing Flint resident Justin Jersey during the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Prosecutors charged Jersey alongside seven others from across the country. All are charged with assaulting police personnel and related crimes.

Jersey is accused of participating in an assault of a Metropolitan Police Department officer before grabbing a baton and striking other officers, according to the indictment.

Jersey was a notable figure within the ranks of cyber sleuths who have spent the months since Jan. 6 trying to help the FBI identify suspects. The sleuths gave Jersey the nickname "fingerman" due to an obscene tattoo on his middle finger.

A handful of Michigan cases have involved allegations of violent behavior.

In this still frame from YouTube video the man police say is Michael Foy of Wixom,  (wearing a gray winter coat with a fur-lined hood and holding the hockey stick that moments earlier was used to swing at Capitol Police officers at one of the entrances to the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021, during the insurrection).

Federal prosecutors said Michael Joseph Foy of Wixom struck law enforcement at least 10 times with a hockey stick that had carried a Trump flag earlier in the day. 

Foy later rallied others to climb through broken windows in the U.S. Capitol, prosecutors said, citing a YouTube video and police body camera footage.