Senator Mike Lee is promoting a debunked conspiracy theory about a January 6 rioter
WASHINGTON — A Republican senator said over the weekend that he plans to question the FBI director about whether a Trump supporter currently serving four years in federal prison is an undercover federal agent.
Senator Mike Lee, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, promoted on his personal account Speaker Mike Johnson It shows an undercover federal agent disguised as a Trump supporter.
“I can’t wait to ask FBI Director Christopher Wray about this at my next oversight hearing,” Lee said books In a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, just before midnight Saturday, he reshared a post suggesting that a man wearing a MAGA hat was actually an undercover federal agent. “I expect, as always, that his answers will be 97% uninformative.”
In fact, the photo Lee shared shows Jan. 6 defendant Kevin Lyons, a self-proclaimed “idiot” and Trump supporter who stole a framed photo of the late civil rights icon John Lewis and a staffer’s wallet from then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s purse. office. The video shows Lyons, as he leaves the Capitol, briefly shows his hands as a heavily armed tactical team enters the building to control the riot. Lyons holds something in his right hand. Conspiracy theorists have claimed Lyons was carrying a “badge,” but the item appears to be an e-cigarette Lyons was seen carrying earlier in the day, although the quality of the footage makes it difficult to determine that with 100 percent certainty.
“I’m an idiot, I realize that,” Lyons told the judge during his sentencing hearing in July, NBC News reported. mentioned. “I was stupid. I don’t know what happened to me. …I apologize to you, to the country, and to my family.”
Federal Bureau of Prisons records show Lyons is currently in federal custody and is scheduled for release in 2027. video The photo released by Lyons, who was previously released in connection with another case on January 6, shows him pocketing a wallet he stole from a jacket inside Pelosi’s office.
As of Monday afternoon, Lee’s post had not been removed.
X’s original post that Lee reshared was shared by rioters on January 6 Derek Evans, who pleaded guilty to the felony and was sentenced to three months in federal prison. It is now he ran For Congress as a Republican in his home state of West Virginia.
representative. Marjorie Taylor Greene The Georgia governor, a Republican ally of former President Donald Trump, also posted false claims about Lyons but deleted the claim after other social media users disputed it.
“This is a law enforcement badge in his hand while he was disguised as a Trump supporter wearing a MAGA hat,” Greene said books On X before she edited her post to remove this claim. “I’ve said it all along, MAGA didn’t do this.”
Even the far-right conspiracy website Gateway Pundit retracted a post about Lyons’ photo, writing that it “now appears to be just an e-cigarette.”
When reached for comment by NBC News, Lee’s spokesman, Billy Gribbin, in a statement dodged questions about the false claim. “Senator Lee would like Director Wray to answer important questions regarding the unfettered rioters who confronted Capitol Police inside the building, the unidentified pipe bomber, and other individuals in whom the FBI and the January 6 Fraud Commission have shown a surprising lack of interest.” He said.
“Unrestrained fist of rioters collide with Capitol Police” is January 6 Jared Luther OwensWho was charged last month. Owens was one of several rioters released from custody on January 6 because police officers were violently attacked at the Capitol and did not have the resources to deal with the overwhelming number of rioters. Owens, a Trump supporter, allegedly assaulted law enforcement officers with a barricade on Jan. 6, and was arrested by a Capitol Police officer after witnessing Owens “pushing another unidentified U.S. Capitol Police officer against a wall” inside the Capitol, according to the FBI. . A folding knife was found in Owens’ right front pocket.
The FBI and both the Republican National Committee and the Democratic National Committee were unable to identify the person who placed the pipe bombs on the night of January 5. He offered a reward of $500,000 for anyone who provides information leading to their arrest.
“The American people deserve to be treated like adults regarding the events of January 6, and should be given all available information,” Gribbin said.
Some Trump supporters I suggested it a long time ago There is no evidence that federal agents were leading the riots on January 6.
More than 1,200 people have been charged in connection with the attack on the US Capitol, and online sleuths say about 1,000 additional participants have been identified but have not yet been charged.
This article was originally published on NBCNews.com