Politics

Man charged in Jan. 6 riot at U.S. Capitol is running for Texas House seat

Mark Middleton challenging Rep. David Spiller in Republican primary for North Texas district

A North Texas man has filed for office months after he was charged in connection with the U.S. Capitol riot on Jan. 6.

Mark Middleton, who faces nine charges in federal court including assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers, is challenging Republican House District 68 Rep. David Spiller in the North Texas district, according to the Texas Secretary of State website. The district covers Cooke and Montague counties in North Texas and goes as far south as San Saba and Lampasas counties.

On his campaign website, Middleton advocates for exploring Texas secession, increased border security and keeping critical race theory out of Texas schools.

Middleton, and his wife Jalisa, are accused of physically struggling with police officers for more than 30 seconds outside the Capitol during the riot. Bodycam footage also allegedly captured Middleton screaming “f–k you” to the officers multiple times as he kept attempting to push through barricades.

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Investigators were quickly able to identify him through his Facebook, where he posted a video shortly after the riot.

“We are on the front lines. We helped push down the barriers. Jalise and I got pepper sprayed, clubbed, and tear gassed,” Middleton said, according to federal court documents. “We had to retreat, but more patriots pushed forward, and they’re taking back our house. They’ve got the giant flag up on the upper terrace up there. No more fooling around! Jalise and I gotta go back to the hotel and try to recoup and change, get dry clothes on. Make America great again! Freedom!”

Middleton was arrested on April 21 and indicted weeks later on May 19, court records showed. He and Jalise have pleaded not guilty and remain free on a personal recognizance bond. Their next court hearing is scheduled in January, records showed.

Spiller, an attorney from Jacksboro, was elected to the district on March 9 in a special election. Most recently, he has opposed federal COVID-19 vaccine mandates and has asked Gov. Greg Abbott to call a special session to pass more legislation related to border security and vaccine policies.

The primary is slated for March 1, 2022.

Written by Fares Sabawi

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