Skip to Content

Man charged with attacking officer who suffered concussion in US Capitol riot

Andrew Cuomo

Federal prosecutors have filed charges against an alleged US Capitol rioter who was one of the first people to breach barricades outside the complex, saying he attacked the police line, causing an officer to suffer a concussion.

The man, Ryan Stephen Samsel, was charged with forcibly assaulting a police officer, attempting to obstruct a police officer and obstructing an official proceeding, according to court documents unsealed Monday.

Authorities arrested Samsel on Saturday in Pennsylvania, according to the Department of Justice.

Investigators reviewed video footage in which they identified Samsel, who they described as wearing a jean jacket and red MAGA hat. The video, which police say was recorded at approximately 12:50 p.m., shows one of the first clashes with police at barricades outside the Capitol complex on January 6.

“In the process of pushing the barricades to the ground, SAMSEL and others knocked over (a) U.S. Capitol Police Officer … as the crowd lifted the barricades up and pushed toward the Capitol, causing (the officer’s) head to hit the stairs behind her, resulting in a loss of consciousness.”

Samsel picked the officer — prosecutors did not publicly identify her — up off the ground, according to an affidavit, saying, “We don’t have to hurt you, why are you standing in our way?”

Investigators said the officer later “blacked out and collapsed,” and was transported to a hospital where doctors determined that she had a concussion, according to court documents.

When investigators checked to see if Samsel had any criminal history, they said they found he was out on parole from the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections and that there is a warrant out for his arrest in Riverside, New Jersey, for an alleged assault in 2019.

Samsel’s is one of a growing number of cases filed by authorities following the violence that flared as rioters fought with police officers trying to push them back from the Capitol.

An attorney for Samsel was not listed in federal court records, but CNN has reached out to Samsel’s attorney from a previous case in an attempt to seek comment from Samsel.

A CNN analysis of court records and Justice Department announcements found that more than 175 people have been charged so far by federal prosecutors in connection with the riot.

At least 16 of those individuals have been charged with assaulting, resisting, or impeding a law enforcement officer.

Article Topic Follows: US & World

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo

CNN Newsource


KVIA ABC 7 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content