CHICAGO — A Logan Square community activist has been arrested for allegedly storming the Capitol on Jan. 6.
Lawrence Ligas, 62, was charged with four counts in a criminal complaint released by federal authorities Wednesday. Charges include entering and remaining in a restricted building, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building and parading in a capital building.
Ligas appeared before Magistrate Judge Beth Jantz Wednesday afternoon and was ordered released on a personal recognizance bond, said Joseph Fitzpatrick, assistant U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois in an email to Block Club.
According to an FBI affidavit, someone who used to know Ligas saw him quoted in an NPR article titled “Trump Supporters Storm U.S. Capitol, Clash with Police.” In the article, Ligas said, “We’re not moving on. … We are not Republicans. We are the MAGA party. We are patriots.”
Ligas is among 675 people who have been charged for their involvement in the attacks, according to the justice department. The rioting took place after former President Donald Trump falsely claimed the 2020 election was stolen from him. His supporters stormed the Capitol, forcing Congress into a lockdown and almost upending the process to certify the election.
The attempted insurrection led to five people dying, and more than 130 police officers were injured.
Almost a year later, more than 120 people have pleaded guilty to federal charges ranging from misdemeanors to felony obstruction. Ligas is one of 16 defendants from Illinois who have been charged, records show.
Authorities were able to identify Ligas based on YouTube videos and surveillance footage of him inside the Capitol. The FBI also interviewed Ligas in 2017 about a separate matter, and the special agent who conducted the interview confirmed his identity, according to the affidavit.
Ligas is the founder of Logan Square Concerned Citizens, he told DNAinfo at a Trump rally in 2016. At the time, he said he was a lifelong Democrat but was considering a vote for Trump.
Ligas was also outspoken about neighborhood issues in Logan Square, including the demolition of the Mega Mall.
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