HomeTop StoriesFBI searches for growing numbers of January 6 fugitives

FBI searches for growing numbers of January 6 fugitives

During one of the greatest moments of his life, Eric Bochene wore a faded white T-shirt and sat in an empty conference room with green walls, straining to hear the computer’s volume. He grimaced when the virtual conferencing technology faltered. And he regularly expressed his frustration with his situation.

Bochene pleaded guilty to a federal criminal charge in late August for his role in the Attack on the US Capitolk. But he wasn’t in a courtroom. His lawyer was not next to Bochene. Instead, the attorney was on a separate virtual conference connection. And Bochene was not allowed to choose his own outfit.

Although he only pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge, Bochene had to appear for his hearing remotely from a waiting room at the Broome County Jail in Binghamton, NY. He was wearing his prison outfit and under fluorescent lighting, because Bochene is not a typical January 6 defendant.

Bochene is one of a growing number of riot defendants in the U.S. Capitol went into hiding and became fugitives after their arrest or first appearance in court.

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Eric Bochene Facebook profile


The prosecution related to the January 6, 2021 siege is the largest in U.S. history, with approximately 1,100 defendants from nearly every state. While more than 600 of these defendants have pleaded guilty and dozens more have gone to trial, at least six have become (or were) fugitives over the course of this summer. Some are still wanted by the FBI. Eric Bochene was one of them.

Bochene faced four federal charges and was accused of throwing a large object at a Capitol window and then making his way into the Capitol during the siege. Following his arrest in May 2021, Bochene chose to represent himself in court.

At some hearings, he was defiant and invoked language consistent with the sovereign citizen movement. In one set of lawsuits, Bochene unsuccessfully asked the court to pay him $75,000 an hour in fees for his legal services in his own case. Bochene signed one court file with a red fingerprint. At another court hearing, he hesitated when the judge asked him his age and replied “52 or 53”. Born and living in New York, Bochene also acknowledged that he had once considered the possibility of renouncing his US citizenship.

As his trial date approached this summer, his opposition escalated. Bochene failed to show up for a mandatory conference on the status of the trial in Washington, DC, on July 18. A judge issued a warrant for Bochene’s arrest, leading to Bochene’s arrest by U.S. Marshals in the southern part of New York and a court appearance in Binghamton on August 18. 2.

Bochene, who pleaded guilty to the charge of entering a prohibited building, faces up to a year in prison when sentencing in November. But the plea deal required Bochene to remain in Broome County Jail until the sentencing hearing because he failed to appear in court in July.

He told the judge he was not happy about being kept in prison, but Bochene did not challenge the decision at his plea hearing.

The fugitives from Florida

There are four U.S. Capitol fugitives from the Tampa, Florida area — all of whom are being pursued.

One of them, Christopher Worrell, was a member of the far-right Proud Boys organization. Worrell, 52, disappeared days before his August sentencing hearing. The FBI has released a wanted poster with tips to help locate him.

Christopher Worrell

Worrell was found guilty in May of a range of federal charges, including assault or resisting police. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Worrell sprayed pepper gel at a line of police officers trying to defend the Capitol from the mob. Prosecutors said, “Worrell later bragged that he had ‘put in a whole can’ and “handed it to them the fuck.”

Worrell was placed under house arrest pending sentencing. Prosecutors had recommended that the judge sentence Worrell to 14 years in prison.

Since his disappearance in August, a spokesman for the FBI’s Tampa field office told CBS News, “We continue to seek the public’s assistance in providing information” about his whereabouts.

The FBI is also looking for three other suspects from the Tampa area, including Jonathan Pollock, who has been on the run for nearly two years. The agency has offered a $30,000 reward for information leading to Pollock’s arrest. The reward money and a wanted poster with a series of images of Pollock are yet to help officers track down the man in Lakeland, Florida.

FBI poster for Jackson Pollack


The Justice Department alleges that Pollock was part of a violent attack during the Capitol siege. Prosecutors said Pollock “grabbed an officer’s riot shield and engaged in a tug-of-war-like conflict before pulling the officer down the stairs, breaking the officer’s grip and snatching the shield.”

They also said Pollock “then held the riot shield in front of him, charged up the stairs and crashed into the police line.”

“Mr. Pollock is a fugitive. We are asking the public to provide information on his whereabouts so that we can safely bring him in to respond to the charges against him,” said David Walker, FBI Special Agent in Tampa.

Pollock’s sister, Olivia, is also wanted by the FBI. Olivia Pollock, co-defendant in her brother’s case, disappeared days before her trial was due to begin in March.

A Washington, D.C. federal judge signed an arrest warrant for Olivia Pollock on Feb. 28, a week before her scheduled trial date.

Olivia Pollak


Joseph Hutchinson, who is also a co-defendant for the Pollocks, is also wanted by federal authorities. The court has scheduled — and then postponed — a series of hearings for Hutchinson as federal agents have tried to track him down.

Hutchinson is accused of collaborating with police and punching officers during the attack on the Capitol.

Olivia Pollock and Hutchinson pleaded not guilty before going into hiding.

Two of Pollock’s other co-defendants have been found guilty in their case. Michael Perkins, 39, and Joshua Doolin, 25, were each convicted of civil disorder, felony, entering and remaining in a restricted building or site, and disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or site.

Defendants arrested again

Some of the January 6 defendants who failed to appear in court have been quickly recaptured.

Marc Bru of Vancouver, Washington, did not show up for a hearing in his case on June 30, but reportedly continued to post messages on social media about the prosecution and the federal search for his whereabouts as officers tried to track him down.

Justice Department prosecutors said that during the search for Bru, Bru shared tweets about his case that read, “I’m drawing a line in the sand.” “I’d rather die than submit to bloody tyrants.” Nearly a month later, authorities found Bru in Montana.

A court case in the Justice Department stated that “the defendant encountered Montana state police officers after being involved in a car accident in which he states he accidentally drove into a ditch and was then hit by a drunk driver. The suspect informed the responding Montana state police officers that he did not have a valid driver’s license or auto insurance, and that a federal arrest warrant had been issued against him. the height.’

Two months after the January 6 attack, Bru was charged with obstruction and entering a building to which no entry was allowed. Bru had chosen to represent himself in his case before going into hiding.

Defendants who fail to appear in court and flee from the authorities risk more serious or additional charges.

Lucius Outlaw, an associate professor of law at Howard University and a former federal defense attorney, said the Jan. 6 defendants will face stiffer sentences once captured.

“If you’re going to run, you could face additional charges on top of the charges you’re already facing,” Outlaw told CBS News. “If you are convicted, the judge will certainly take into account that you failed to appear in court when you were supposed to and had to be summoned to court by the US Marshals.”

Nearly 1,100 people have been arrested in the U.S. Capitol siege investigation, with hundreds more arrests expected.

An FBI spokesperson told CBS News, “The FBI is using its full investigative resources and is working closely with federal, state and local law enforcement partners to prosecute those responsible for the January 6, 2021, violence at the U.S. Capitol.”

Rob Legare contributed to this report

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