Capitol rioter who allegedly buried cop's badge in backyard ordered to jail

A federal judge on Tuesday ordered a man suspected of stealing a police officer’s badge during the Jan. 6 Capitol riot and burying it in his backyard to be returned to jail.

Chief U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell said Thomas Sibick was “convinced of the rightness of his actions” and cannot, therefore, be trusted to adhere to conditions of bail release, Reuters reported.

Sibick, who was previously released for home confinement by a Buffalo federal magistrate, allegedly grabbed officer Michael Fanone's badge and radio as the officer was pulled into a crowd of rioters on Jan. 6.


Others in the crowd beat and tased Fanone, who was left unconscious and hospitalized as a result of the incident.

Sibick maintains that he accidentally removed Fanone's badge as he attempted to pull him away from other rioters, and that he grabbed the radio to press the “emergency orange button” to get help. 

Prosecutors in earlier court filings said the Buffalo resident initially told authorities that he threw the items away in a dumpster for fear of punishment. 

Authorities said Sibick later retracted the statement and admitted that he buried the badge in his backyard. 

USA Today reported that Howell in court Tuesday said that Sibick lied to the FBI at least three times throughout four interviews in connection with his alleged involvement in the Capitol mob attack. 

The judge added that “the defendant's conduct is on video tape," and that Sibick demonstrated "Such egregious conduct...and no remorse.” 


The judge added that prosecutors presented "overwhelming evidence" to support Sibick being kept in jail.

"He was part of this violent assault on the Capitol in which people did lose their lives," Howell added. 

Howell’s Tuesday decision came with a new arrest warrant for Sibick, who will be transported to Washington, D.C., where he will be held without bond, according to USA Today. 

However, Alexander Anzalone, a federal public defender representing Sibick, argued Tuesday that prosecutors did not demonstrate any continued risk his client would pose by remaining out of jail. 

"There is no evidence that Mr. Sibick is an ongoing danger," Anzalone said, USA Today reported. 

Sibick is one of hundreds of individuals facing charges in connection with the January pro-Trump mob attack, in which multiple people died and dozens of others were injured. 

Federal authorities have said they anticipate bringing additional charges against more individuals as they continue to conduct their investigations.