HONOLULU (KHON2) — Nicholas Ochs, the founder of Proud Boys Hawaii, has been released from custody. He appeared in federal court Monday morning, accused of taking part in the deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.
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Ochs has been charged with Unlawful Entry Into Restricted Building or Grounds, which is a misdemeanor. His attorney says there is a possibility that prosecutors might file more serious charges in the near future.
The former Hawaii political candidate was released from the Honolulu Federal Detention Center after posting a $5,000 bond. While waiting for trial, Ochs is not allowed to join any organized protests or enter any government buildings. He’s also not allowed to travel.
Federal prosecutors say Ochs was among the crowd of rioters at the US Capitol. A twitter post from his personal account indicates he was among the people who had entered the building during the riot.
“I suspect that the US Attorney’s Office and the Department of Justice are looking at filing a superseding indictment in this case and the other cases charging conspiracy, possibly for insurrection,” said attorney Myles Breiner.
Meanwhile, local law enforcement officials in Hawaii say Wednesday’s riot could just be the tip of the iceberg and they’re bracing for the possibility of more violence in the state and across the country.
“We, like every state are on high alert right now for the next two weeks. What we experienced on Wednesday, I think it was a wakeup call for everybody. We need to understand that the next two weeks are gonna be challenging weeks,” said Hawaii State Attorney General Clare Connors.
Officials say several investigations are ongoing with the FBI leading the charge. But law enforcement at the state and local levels are participating.
“There is a heightened state of awareness in terms of what may occur between now and January 20 and we are coordinating with all the federal state and local entities in order to safeguard the security of the people of the state of Hawaii,” said Special Agent-In-Charge John Tobon of Homeland Security Investigations.
“We have our ear to the ground so we have investigators and our entire law enforcement on the state side involved, working and supporting every effort underway right now to ensure that what happened on January 6 doesn’t happen again,” said Connors.
As for Ochs, he’s scheduled for another federal court hearing in Washington D.C. on Friday, Jan. 15. The hearing is expected to be conducted remotely.