A former top editor of an Orthodox Jewish newspaper in New York City was arrested Thursday on charges of disrupting police officers trying to protect the US Capitol during the Jan. 6 riots.
Elliot Resnick, 39, was editor-in-chief of The Jewish Press when he joined the crowd of Donald Trump supporters who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, according to an FBI agent affidavit.
Videos show Resnick grabbing and holding the arm of a Capitol police sergeant who sprayed a chemical irritant to stop rioters from entering the building, the affidavit said. Another officer tried to remove Resnick’s hand from the sergeant’s arm, the agent wrote.
The FBI arrested Resnick in New York City on charges including civil disorder and assault or interference with law enforcement. Court records did not immediately list an attorney for Resnick.
The Brooklyn-based Jewish Press bills itself as the largest independent Jewish weekly newspaper in the United States. A statement on her website said she was “known for her editorial vivacity” and “was politically incorrect long before the term was coined”.
Politico reported in April 2021 that the video showed Resnick in the Capitol on Jan. 6. Resnick later wrote an article defending the riot in the Capitol without admitting his presence in the building that day, Politico’s report said.
Naomi Mauer, editor of the Jewish Press, told Politico at the time that the newspaper believed Resnick “acted within the law.” A statement from The Jewish Press editors confirmed that Resnick was at the Capitol on January 6 and had “covered the rally and the horrifying events of the rest of the day” for the newspaper.
The editorial wrote, “The Jewish press fails to see why Elliot’s personal views of former President Trump should distinguish him from the dozens of other journalists covering events, including many in the Capitol during the riots.”
Then-President Trump addressed a crowd of his supporters at the Stop the Steal rally on Jan. 6. The mob that stormed the Capitol disrupted a joint session of Congress certifying Joe Biden’s election victory.
Before the riot, Resnick posted social media messages echoing Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that the Democrats stole the election from him, according to posts cited in the FBI affidavit.
Resnick has been a reporter and editor at The Jewish Press since 2006. He left the newspaper in May 2021 before the FBI said it was investigating him.
The Jewish Press staff did not immediately respond to emails and phone messages requesting comment on Resnick’s arrest.
About 1,000 people have been charged with federal crimes related to the Capitol riots. Several of the rioters’ defendants have claimed they acted as journalists when they joined the mob in entering the Capitol, but prosecutors and judges have routinely denied those claims.
For the past two years, the FBI has spread across the county arresting suspects in the Capitol riots. The cases are often based on tips they received in the first months after the riots.
The FBI agent’s report on Resnick’s actions on January 6 shows him as an active participant in the riots.
The video showed Resnick repeatedly gesturing others to come up the stairs to the Capitol after rioters broke through a line of police officers, the agent’s affidavit said.
According to the FBI, Renick was one of the first rioters to enter the Capitol through the East Rotunda doors. After entering the building, Resnick and others tried to force open a door that a police officer was trying to keep closed, the FBI said. Another officer trying to stop Renick was thrown to the ground by another rioter.
According to the affidavit, Resnick grabbed other rioters and dragged them into the Capitol after failing to open the door. It is said he spent about 50 minutes in the Capitol before leaving.
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