La Crosse solider charged after Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol breach
Abram Markofski enlisted in the Wisconsin National Guard in 2019 and is also a student at Viterbo University
MADISON, Wis. (WKBT) — Two Wisconsin men have been arrested and charged for their role in breaching the U.S. Capitol Jan. 6, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Abram Markofski of La Crosse County and Brandon Nelson of Dane County appeared in federal court Monday. Each man was charged with entering and remaining in a restricted building; disorderly or disruptive conduct in a restricted building; violent entry or disorderly conduct; and parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building.
Both men were released from custody on the conditions they stay away from Washington, D.C., unless they need to appear for court purposes and that they get travel outside of Wisconsin approved. They will also need to call pretrial services at least once per week.
Markofski is 24 years old and, according to online records, lives on La Crosse’s northside. Markofski enlisted in the Wisconsin National Guard in July of 2019 and holds the rank of Private First Class. The guard spokesman could not discuss Markofski’s criminal case.
Markofski is a student at Viterbo University. Rick Trietley, Viterbo University Executive Vice President for Student Success says criminal charges violate the student code of conduct and Markowski could be asked to leave campus during the internal judicial process.
According to court documents, the Federal Bureau of Investigations received a tip January 7, the day after the riot in Washington, D.C., that Nelson was among those who breached the U.S. Capitol building during the deadly riot.
The area was closed to the public while legislators verified the vote count of the Electoral College of the 2020 Presidential Election. While law-makers were discussing the vote count, the crowd outside broke into the building, breaking windows and causing other destruction.
FBI special agents interviewed Nelson, who admitted taking part in the events at the Capitol along with his friend Markofski. The two drove to Washington for the political rally, then entered the Capitol, spending about 40 minutes inside a room with a dome-like ceiling, according to court documents. Nelson claimed police officers guided them into the building, according to the documents.
Markofski told investigators that he accompanied Nelson to the Capitol; however, he did not characterize police officers as guiding them into the building.
Court documents say an electronic device tied to Markofski was also at the U.S. Capitol, according to its Google location data.
An Eau Claire man is also charged in connection to the event at the capitol. The FBI arrested 52-year old Kevin Loftus in January. Loftus was released from custody.
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