Julian Elie Khater, 32, of State College, Penn., and George Pierre Tanios, 39, of Morgantown, W. Va., were arrested Sunday, charged with “conspiring to injure officers and assaulting federal officers” and other crimes, the Justice Department says.
Tanios was arrested at his home; Khater was arrested as he was getting off an airplane at New Jersey’s Newark Airport.
Sicknick died the day after being sprayed by the pair.
During a standoff with police at the Capitol, Khater asked Tanios to “give me that bear s*it,” according to the Justice Department, citing video footage from the scene.
According to the DOJ, after pulling a canister from Tanios’ backpack, Khater moved to the front of the crowd, next to the police perimeter. He then raised his hand, aimed the canister at Sicknick and two other officers who were standing just a few feet away, and waved his arm from side to side, the agency says.
The three officers, Sicknick and C. Edwards from the Capitol Police and D. Chapman from Washington’s Metropolitan Police, were forced to retreat, “holding their hands to their faces and rushing to find water to wash out their eyes,” the Justice Department said. The agency did not provide the officers’ first names.
The chemical that hit Sicknick, Edwards and Chapman temporary blinded them and took them out of commission as a mob of people tried to push past a bike rack that was being used as a barricade at the Capitol’s Lower West Terrace, the affidavit states.
“Officer Edwards reported lasting injuries underneath her eyes, including scabbing that remained on her face for weeks,” according to the court document.
It was reported earlier that Sicknick made it back to his Capitol Police station and collapsed there, before being rushed to the hospital.
Originally, mainstream media and Democratic Congressional members, reported that Sicknick was beaten to death with a fire extinguisher, which was untrue.
The Chicago Tribune reported, “During the struggle at the Capitol, Sicknick, 42, was hit in the head with a fire extinguisher, two law enforcement officials said. The officials could not discuss the ongoing investigation publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.”
Khater and Tanios face “one count of conspiracy to injure an officer; three counts of assault on a federal officer with a dangerous weapon; one count of civil disorder; one count of obstructing or impeding an official proceeding; one count of physical violence on restricted grounds, while carrying dangerous weapon and resulting in significant bodily injury; and one count of violent entry and disorderly conduct, act of physical violence on Capitol grounds,” the Justice Department says.
It is unclear if anyone will be charged in the death of Brian Sicknick.