Jan. 6 defendant accused of assaulting officer set to be released from jail before trial

Published: Nov. 10, 2022 at 5:07 PM EST

WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - Federal Judge Thomas Hogan ruled Thursday, Nov. 10, that Ryan Nichols is not able to adequately prepare for trial in jail, and he will be temporarily allowed to return home with restrictions.

Nichols is charged with five felonies for his actions on Jan. 6, 2021, including assaulting an officer with a deadly or dangerous weapon.

Much of Nichols’s action is documented through his own social media posts or those from others. In one video, the defendant is seen instructing the mob to grab their weapons while holding a bull horn and a crow bar.

“We’re calling for violence now,” Nichols said in a video he posted of himself after the attack. “So if you want to know where Ryan Nichols stands? Ryan Nichols stands for violence.”

Judge Hogan made clear part of Nichols temporary release will include not being able to contact others on social media. Nichols will also be required to wear a GPS monitoring system.

Nichols’s attorney, Joe McBride, made the case to Hogan that the jails where Nichols was being held in have not allowed Nichols access to materials that could help him defend himself in court. McBride maintains his client’s innocence and says video does not tell the entire story.

“It’s important that when people think about violence, they should think about Kyle Rittenhouse,” McBride said. “He shot three people on camera, on video. The video footage was running, and guess what, he walked at the end of the day. Because his violence was justifiable. Our position is that Ryan Nichols, he witnessed a great amount of danger that day. All different types of abuses. He himself was ‘Maced’ and things happened to him. He had a right to defend himself.”

The exact terms of Nichols release will be finalized in a hearing Tuesday November 22. There is not yet a date for the actual trial.