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Man from Sarasota County, girlfriend, charged in U.S. Capitol riots

Sarasota County

FILE – In this Jan. 6, 2021, file photo, supporters of President Donald Trump climb the west wall of the the U.S. Capitol in Washington. Although pro-democracy and human rights activists around the globe were stunned to see a mob storm the Capitol, they say they were heartened and inspired because the system ultimately prevailed. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana File)

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A former Englewood man who was allegedly photographed among the mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol earlier this month has been arrested.

Dana Joe Winn, 45, and his girlfriend, Rachael Lynn Pert, 40, turned themselves into the FBI on Tuesday, according to an affidavit. According to his Facebook profile, Winn attended Lemon Bay High School in Englewood. The couple now lives in Middleburg.

Winn and Pert were accused of taking part in the deadly riot that left five dead and dozens injured.

The Metropolitan Police Department in Washington D.C. had posted a flyer showing dozens wanted for storming the building. According to the FBI, Winn was pictured wearing a green “Trump” hat. Pert was wearing a green camouflage jacket with an American flag bandanna. One of Pert’s coworkers recognized the couple and contacted the FBI.

The FBI identified Winn and Pert as suspects after comparing photos from the riot to the couple’s photos on social media and in the Florida driver database.

Officials said Winn had also documented his road trip to Washington in a now-deleted Facebook video. He reportedly told his Facebook followers he was heading to the Capitol because “as American patriots, we’re tired of all this (expletive). It’s time to take a stand.”

“We’re on the verge of (expletive) losing it. He indicates that they brought flagpoles to “hit Antifa in the head if need be,” he said, according to the FBI.

The FBI executed a search warrant on both of their residences on Jan. 19. Authorities said Winn showed them various items he wore inside the Capitol, and a flagpole he was carrying.

The FBI said Winn and Pert provided them with voluntary statements, and admitted to traveling to Washington to attend the rally and entered the Capitol building. The couple said they were supporting their president and their country.

Winn and Pert were arrested and charged with two misdemeanors – knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do so, and willfully and knowingly parade, demonstrate, or picket in any of the Capitol Buildings.

Pert’s bond was $5,000, and Winn’s was $10,000.

If convicted, the couple each faces up to 18 months in prison and or fines of up to $105,000.

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