Orange County resident Robert Minuta, age 36, of Newburgh, was caught on camera with Stone wearing a baseball hat and military-style vest with the Oath Keeper logo prior to the violent insurrection on Wednesday, Jan. 6 prosecutors said following his arrest.
Following his greeting with Stone, Minuta can later be seen among the crowd that approached the Capitol and interacting with Capitol Police officers while wearing goggles.
Minuta, who owns a tattoo parlor in Newburgh, was charged with obstruction of Congress and unlawful entry following his arrest on Saturday, March 6.
“Minuta and others affiliated with the Oath Keepers breached the U.S. Capitol grounds, where Minuta aggressively berated and taunted U.S. Capitol police officers responsible for protecting the Capitol and the representatives inside of the Capitol,” prosecutors said.
Video footage of the riot shows Minuta harassing officers along with other rioters before exiting a damaged Capitol door.
“Specifically, Minuta yells at an officer, among other things, ‘All that’s left is the Second Amendment!’ while holding up two fingers, apparently referencing the right to keep and bear firearms,” the complaint states.
Prosecutors said that Minute was a flight risk, and asked that he be held until his trial. Minuta was also cited last spring for opening his tattoo parlor in defiance of the state’s COVID-19 guidance, which prosecutors said is evidence “this man does not respect the law.”
U.S. Attorney Ben Gianforti also made note that Minuta “had provided freelance security for various high profile individuals,” though Stone wasn’t specifically mentioned.
However, a judge released Minuta on bail, saying that he “was not engaged in any acts of violence on Jan. 6. I think it is an overstatement of the situation to say that because Mr. Minuta was wearing particular gear he is predisposed to particular acts of violence.”
Stone, a Fairfield County native (Norwalk) who attended high school in Northern Westchester County (John Jay in Lewisboro), made a statement to ABC News alleging that he does not know Minuta, nor was he “familiar with his name prior to his being identified in earlier media stories where it was alleged that he was involved in illegal events up at the Capitol."
“If he was indeed among those who volunteered to provide security while I visited Washington DC I was unaware of it.”
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