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Three More Western Pennsylvanians Charged In Jan. 6 Attack On The U.S. Capitol

An image from the federal criminal complaint shows Mitchell Vukich and Nicholas Perretta inside the halls of the U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. 6, 2021.
Photo courtesy of the U.S. Department of Justice
An image from the federal criminal complaint shows Mitchell Vukich and Nicholas Perretta inside the halls of the U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. 6, 2021.

Three men from Western Pennsylvania are facing federal charges related to the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. More than a dozen people from Western Pennsylvania have been similarly charged.

Mitchell Vukich of New Brighton, Nicholas Perretta of Baden and Samuel Fox of Mt. Pleasant were taken into custody Wednesday, months after a large crowd broke into the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, interrupting the certification of the 2020 election results for much of the day.

According to a federal criminal complaint, Vukich is charged with theft of government property, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building, disorderly conduct on capitol grounds and other related charges.

The complaint states that seven online tips identified Vukich as a participant in the attack. Special agents at the Pittsburgh FBI office interviewed one person who shared screenshots of several of Vukich's tweets in which he identified himself as "one of the first 15 people in the #Capitol." A search warrant for Google records showed Vukich’s mobile device was present at the U.S. Capitol at the time of the riots. He is also seen on security footage inside the U.S. Capitol building. The complaint states that Vukich admitted to the FBI that he was present at the U.S. Capitol during the riots and admitted to taking paperwork described as a congressional session agenda.

Nicholas Perretta faces the same charges as Vukich. Security footage from the U.S. Capitol building shows the men together, according to the federal criminal complaint. Vukich identified Perretta during an interview with FBI agents about his own role in the attack.

Perretta told investigators that he and Vukich traveled to Washington, D.C. together to attend a speech by President Donald Trump. After the speech, the pair entered U.S. Capitol grounds, according to the complaint.

Perretta also admitted taking documents from the building which are described as “three-month-old congressional papers” that he said he later threw away. Perretta told investigators, “that he believed the U.S. Capitol was open to the general public.” Perretta said he was tear-gassed while walking into the building.

A third Western Pennsylvania resident who appeared in court Wednesday was Samuel Fox. He is charged with violent entry and disorderly conduct in a Capitol Building, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building and related charges.

According to the federal criminal complaint, authorities were initially made aware of Fox when a witness contacted the FBI two days after the attack. The witness shared Facebook posts from Fox showing him inside the U.S. Capitol. A second witness reported the same posts to the FBI on Jan. 11.

One post reads, “The next time I see fireworks go off in DC I want them attached to traitor politicians. Unrelated, but see yinz on the 6th.”

Security footage and a Google search warrant also indicated that Fox was in the Capitol Building at the time of the riots.

Of the more than 500 people charged in relation with the riots, nearly one in five are accused of committing acts of violence, according to a database created and maintained by NPR of all the people charged in the riot.

Kiley Koscinski covers city government, policy and how Pittsburghers engage with city services. She also works as a fill-in host for All Things Considered. Kiley has previously served as a producer on The Confluence and Morning Edition.