Lead Capitol riot prosecutor says Trump could be culpable for his role

Michael Sherwin, the federal prosecutor who previously led the criminal investigation into the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, said former President TrumpDonald TrumpGOP-led Maricopa County board decries election recount a 'sham' Analysis: Arpaio immigration patrol lawsuit to cost Arizona county at least 2 million Conservatives launch 'anti-cancel culture' advocacy organization MORE could be culpable for his role in the attack.

Sherwin told CBS News’s “60 Minutes” in an interview that aired Sunday that it was “unequivocal” that the former president was “the magnet that brought the people to D.C. on the 6th” before his supporters stormed the Capitol building.

“Now the question, is he criminally culpable for everything that happened during the siege, during the breach?” Sherwin said after Scott Pelley asked if Trump’s role has been part of the probe.


“We have plenty of people — we have soccer moms from Ohio that were arrested saying, ‘Well, I did this because my president said I had to take back our house,’” he said. “That moves the needle towards that direction. Maybe the president is culpable for these actions.”

But the federal prosecutor added that two militia members have said in public record, “ ‘You know what? We did this because Trump just talks a big game. He’s just all talk. We did what he wouldn't do.’ ”

Pelley followed up asking Sherwin, “In short you have investigators looking into the president’s role?”

“We have people looking at everything, correct,” Sherwin responded. “Everything’s being looked at.”

Until Friday, Sherwin led the Justice Department's investigation into the deadly Jan. 6 riot, and more than 400 defendants have been charged for their alleged involvement in the breach. 

Trump has faced accusations, particularly from Democratic lawmakers, that his call to supporters to rally in Washington and march to the Capitol on the day Congress was scheduled to confirm the Electoral College vote sparked the violence. 

The former president was impeached for a second time a week before his presidency ended over the insurrection but was acquitted by the Senate. Ten House Republicans voted in favor of impeachment, and seven Senate Republicans voted to convict Trump.