According to an arrest warrant, there was probable cause to believe that the Rocky Mount police officers who entered the Capitol on Jan. 6 entered without authorization.

Vincent Veloz, a special agent with U.S. Capitol Police, cited an alleged violation of 18 U.S. Code §1752(a)(1) and (2) as well as 40 U.S. Code §5104(e)(2)(D), which relate to entering a restricted building and impeding or disrupting the orderly conduct of government business.

Today at 2:45 p.m.

The Rocky Mount Police Department stated today that two officers were charged by federal authorities with misdemeanors stemming from their presence at an event in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6.

The types of misdemeanors showing what law may have been broken were not disclosed.

The town’s review of this matter is ongoing, and the officers remain on administrative leave.

The Rocky Mount officers were still not named by the police department, but a social media post identified Rocky Mount Police Sgt. Thomas Robertson and Officer Jacob Fracker in front of a statue of Gen. John Stark from the American Revolutionary War known for the phrase, “Live free or die.”

The police department also have has not identified the event, but on Wednesday, a March to Save America rally was held in Washington, D.C., in which multiple individuals breached the Capitol.

The riots at the Capitol resulted in the death of an officer beaten by a mob and a rioter who was shot climbing through a broken window.

Another woman who attending the rally had collapsed for unknown reasons, and two others suffered medical emergencies — allegedly a heart attack and stroke.

According to reports, Robertson said they did not do anything illegal, alleging they were escorted into the building by Capitol police and did not participate in any violence.

In response to the news of the officers attending the rally, Black Lives Matter protesters gathered in front of the police department on Sunday, holding signs that included “Silence is Violence” and “Police Brutality Matters in Franklin Co.”

More about the event and aftermath may be found in the Smith Mountain Eagle newspaper.

Original 10-10-20

Two officers with the Rocky Mount Police Department who attended an event Wednesday in Washington, D.C., were placed on administrative leave pending review.

The police department did not identify the event, but on Wednesday, a rally was held in Washington, D.C., in which multiple individuals breached the Capitol.

The officers were not named and were off-duty when they attended the event.

The police department was made aware of their attendance, and based on available information, the department notified federal authorities. The individuals who were present at the event are now on administrative leave.

"The Town of Rocky Mount fully supports all lawful expressions of freedom of speech and assembly by its employees but does not condone the unlawful acts that occurred that day," the police department said in a statement.

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