Former Fargo man charged in connection to Jan 6 insurrection

Published: Nov. 20, 2023 at 4:33 PM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - A Fargo South grad faces charges in connection with the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

Eric Zeis, 37, now lives in Monument, Colorado. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Zeis was arrested Nov. 13 in Denver.

Zeis faces a felony charge of obstruction of law enforcement during civil disorder and several misdemeanors, including disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, and parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building.

According to court documents, Zeis and another man named Justin Schulze drove from their home in Colorado to Washington, D.C., to attend Former President Trump’s speech and “Stop the Steal” rally on Jan. 6, 2021. After the rally, the two made their way to the east side of the Capitol building, where they joined a large group of rioters that had forced United States Capitol Police (USCP) officers to retreat from their positions to the East Rotunda doors.

Zeis and Schulze then positioned themselves in a large group outside the East Rotunda doors that pushed against USCP officers to get inside. Documents say members of the mob chanted “Stop the Steal!” and “Our house!” as rioters banged on the glass windows. At about 2:25 p.m., the Rotunda door was successfully breached by rioters, and the duo entered shortly after.

The pair then made their way to varying parts of the Capitol, such as the Rotunda, Statuary Hall, the hallways between the House Chamber and the Speaker’s Lobby, and the Statuary Hall Connector, where they emersed themselves in a large group confronting officers guarding the U.S House of Representatives chambers.

In the 34 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,200 individuals have been charged in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 400 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement, a felony. The investigation remains ongoing.