Typically, federal charges against a 52-year-old woman accused of assaulting a police sergeant with a flagpole and threatening the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives would be an extraordinary event.
In the case of Audrey Ann Southard-Rumsey, it’s just another Wednesday on the ever-expanding U.S. Capitol riot docket, where attacks on law enforcement rank in the triple digits and threats against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi hit federal court almost as regularly as rain.
“Tell Pelosi we are coming for that bitch,” Southard-Rumsey allegedly shouted at police, using the same barnyard epithet for the Democratic Party’s California-based leader as her fellow alleged rioter Richard “Bigo” Barnett is said to have scrawled on a note at her desk.
Arrested on Wednesday, Southard-Rumsey adds to the growing list of those accused of attacking police with fists, poles, and chemical spray on Jan. 6th. The count stood at an estimated 139 assaults on law enforcement last week.
More than 125 people have been charged to date with assaulting or impeding law enforcement, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.
The FBI’s affidavit alleges that a flagpole was Southard-Rumsey’s weapon of choice.
“At some point during Sgt. V.’s interaction with Southard-Rumsey, she obtained a flagpole which she held in her hands and pressed against his chest,” an agent’s affidavit states, shielding the name of the U.S. Capitol Police sergeant. “Once Southard-Rumsey had the flagpole on Sgt. V.’s chest, she did not remove it and he felt pressure from it. Southard-Rumsey was the only one holding onto the flagpole. When the second agitator of the group yelled ‘Let’s go,’ Southard-Rumsey started pushing Sgt. V. with the flagpole and drove him back into the first set of doors leading onto the House floor. When Sgt. V. hit the doors, the doors flew open and he was pushed into the Lafayette marble statue striking the back left side of his head on the base of the statue. Sgt. V. felt like he was being trampled during the ordeal.”
Authorities say that Southard-Rumsey can be heard on video shouting at law enforcement: “There’s a hundred thousand of us, what’s it going to be?” and “Last friend, last bullet. What’s it going to be?”
Like many others, Southard-Rumsey was allegedly snared by her social media posts leading to her charges. The FBI’s affidavit includes a screenshot of a Facebook post of her standing in front of the Capitol building with the message: “DC Taking it back!!”
According to the FBI, a tipster also sent them a Twitter post of Southard-Rumsey writing; “I’m doing a live feed. Standing in front of the Capitol Building ready to take it. As soon as we get enough people up here. To run the Capitol Building. It’s going to be fun.”
Southard-Rumsey faces nine criminal charges, including assaulting a federal officer, obstructing law enforcement, obstructing of justice, knowingly entering a restricted building, disorderly conduct inside that building, and related counts.
Prosecutors say that 440 people have been arrested on charges related to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, some 120 days after the attack.
Read the criminal complaint against Southard-Rumsey below:
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