SPONSORED:

Attorney of firefighter charged in Capitol riot says Trump encouraged 'despicable behavior'

A lawyer for a Florida firefighter arrested in connection with last week’s deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol cast part of the blame on President TrumpDonald TrumpHead of firms that pushed 'Italygate' theory falsely claimed VA mansion was her home: report Centrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting VA moving to cover gender affirmation surgery through department health care MORE for encouraging "despicable behavior" among his supporters.

Andrew Williams of the Sanford Fire Department has been charged with disorderly conduct after being photographed among the crowd outside the Capitol, The Orlando Sentinel reported, citing federal records. Williams made his first federal court appearance in Orlando Tuesday.

House Democrats are preparing to impeach Trump for the second time for his actions ahead of last Wednesday's violence, which included months of false claims about the 2020 election and directly encouraging his supporters to march on the Capitol. Trump has also been banned from multiple social media outlets, and even some Republicans have called on him to resign.

ADVERTISEMENT

“The president and the Capitol Police encouraged despicable behavior, Mr. Williams took part in none of it,” attorney Vincent Citro told reporters outside of the courthouse before rushing his client away from press. He did not address footage appearing to show Williams inside the building.

Williams appeared in handcuffs and leg restraints, but Magistrate Judge Embry Kidd ordered him released on condition of a psychiatric evaluation, ordering him to remain in Florida’s Middle District, according to the newspaper. Kidd also prohibited Williams from possession of any “firearm, ammunition, destructive device, or other dangerous weapon.”

“The United States has indicated you pose a risk of flight and potential danger to your community,” Kidd said.

It is unclear to what extent Citro’s claims will figure into his actual trial defense of his client.

A report released by the House Judiciary Committee Tuesday evening claims numerous rioters believed they were following the president’s directions by storming the Capitol. It specifically cites former West Virginia Del. Derrick Evans (R), who had posted on social media that he was traveling to Washington in response to a tweet from the president.