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January 6th Committee releases audio of Ohio Oath Keepers leader during attack on U.S. Capitol

Jessica Watkins is charged with seditious conspiracy
House select committee video allegedly showing Jessica Watkins and two other Ohioans inside the United States Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021
Posted at 8:45 PM, Jul 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-22 21:45:52-04

WASHINGTON — Outside the Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021, protesters at the 'Stop the Steal' rally had just seen President Trump's tweet condemning Vice President Mike Pence for "not having the courage" to block the certification of President Biden's Electoral College win.

Ohio Oath Keepers leader Jessica Watkins is on her walkie-talkie talking with other members of their alleged conspiracy to keep Trump in power, according to a federal indictment.

Ohioans, Jessica Watkins, Donovan Crowl, and Sandra Parker are charged with conspiracy related to the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the United States Capitol.
Ohioans, Jessica Watkins, Donovan Crowl, and Sandra Parker are charged with conspiracy related to the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the United States Capitol.

On Thursday, for the first time, the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol presented what members said were real-time audio communications between Watkins and others before and during the attack.

"What percentage of the crowd is going to the Capitol?" an unidentified man asked Watkins.

"100%," Watkins said. "It has spread like wildfire that Pence has betrayed us and everybody's marching on the Capitol. All million of us. It's insane."

Grand jury indictments have charged Watkins and more than a dozen others connected with the Oath Keepers and Proud Boys with seditious conspiracy for allegedly trying to use violence to stop the transfer of presidential power from Trump to Joe Biden.

Watkins and three other Ohioans, Donovan Crowl, and Bennie and Sandra Parker, a married couple from Morrow, are charged with conspiracy and other alleged crimes related to the attack.

Watkins, Crowl and Sandra Parker are charged with entering the Capitol building moments after Trump tweeted that protesters shouldn't harm police.

"We are in the mezzanine," Watkins said on the walkie-talkie channel allegedly used by co-conspirators. "We are in the main dome right now. We are rocking it."

The four Ohioans charged with conspiracy are scheduled to go on trial in February.

This story was originally published by WCPO in Cincinnati, Ohio.