A Chicago man was convicted Friday of six federal charges for entering the U.S. Capitol and then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office during the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection.
Kevin James Lyons could face more than 20 years in prison, though prosecutors are only seeking a nearly six-year sentence for a downstate man who assaulted a police officer and a news cameraman during the riot.
Lyons, of the Gladstone Park neighborhood, was arrested a week after he and hundreds of other followers of former President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol in an attempt to halt certification of the 2020 election.
Lyons was the second Illinoisan to be arrested in connection with the riot, a list that now includes three dozen residents from across the state, including a Chicago Police officer. About 1,000 have been charged nationwide.
Shortly after Lyons was arrested on Chicago’s Northwest Side, federal agents showed Lyons screenshots of posts he made on Instagram, including his alleged route from Chicago to D.C. and a picture taken outside Pelosi’s office. The map was captioned, “I refuse to tell my children that I sat back and did nothing. I’m heading to DC to STOP THE STEAL!”
Faced with that evidence, Lyons allegedly told the FBI agents: “Wow you are pretty good. That was up for only an hour.”
Agents later questioned him about a video he had taken while in the Capitol and asked if he could send it to them. After telling them the file would be too big, he uploaded the 90-second clip to YouTube and emailed the agents.
“Hello Nice FBI Lady, Here are the links to the videos. Looks like Podium Guy is in one of them, less the podium. Let me know if you need anything else. Kevin Lyons,” Lyons wrote in the email.
During questioning, Lyons also said he exited the “big boss office” after a Capitol Police officer entered with his weapon drawn.
Lyons later signed a statement of facts for the court acknowledging that he was recording on his phone as he walked around Pelosi’s office, at one point capturing his own reflection in a mirror.
Glancing at an office television with news coverage of the riot, Lyons commented: “Is that us? … I’m not leaving my house.”
Lyons pulled a coat from a rack, asking other rioters, “Anyone need a coat?” Then he went through the pockets, swiping a wallet with $50, according to prosecutors.
He also took a framed photo of Pelosi with former U.S. Rep. John Lewis, later taking a picture of himself with it in the backseat of his Uber ride away from the Capitol. Prosecutors said he then sent that photo in a text message, “stating he was now a felon and ‘I took this off Pelosi’s f—--- desk!”
Lyons, who pleaded not guilty, was convicted Friday in Washington of six criminal counts, including entering and remaining in a restricted building, disorderly conduct in the Capitol and obstructing an official proceeding.
Lyons is currently free on personal recognizance, which the court extended until his sentencing July 14, though he does have some restrictions.
During an initial hearing, U.S. Magistrate Judge Gabriel Fuentes ordered Lyons have no contact with anyone who participated in the Jan. 6 riot or who’s planning to further disrupt the U.S. House or Senate.