Ray Epps' Lawyers Say DOJ Is Criminally Charging Him Over January 6th, Big Question Immediately Arises

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Ray Epps has become one of the most infamous figures surrounding the unrest of January 6th. For years, many have wondered why Epps, who was caught on video directing people to enter the Capitol Building, avoided arrest while others who seemingly did far less were arrested and charged. He also sent a text in which he claimed to have “orchestrated” the events.


The theories surrounding that have led Epps to file a lawsuit against  Fox News, claiming that he was defamed by Tucker Carlson. In a shocking turn of events, though, the lawsuit claims, as part of its case, that the DOJ has notified Epps that they will be seeking criminal charges against him.

It’s important to note that there is no direct confirmation that charges have been or will be filed. The DOJ and FBI have not commented, with FBI Dir. Christopher Wray again being tight-lipped during a congressional hearing on Wednesday.

Still, it seems unlikely that Epps’ own lawyers would make something like that up, much less put it in their own lawsuit filing. There’s no reason to disbelieve their assertion, and typically, when the DOJ notifies someone that they intend to charge them, it’s just a matter of time before it happens.


I’m not sure what the play is here for Epps. His lawyers seem to be claiming in his lawsuit that the DOJ is only going to charge him because of the media campaign against him by Tucker Carlson and others. But would a judge really buy that assumption (and allow a jury to take it into account)? The entire thing seems ill-advised, especially since the news going public will only cause more of a firestorm.

Regardless, the obvious question is now front and center: Why did the DOJ wait this long?

You’ve had hundreds and hundreds of participants in January 6th arrested and charged over the last two and a half years. Many of them are in jail for offenses like “parading,” which essentially amounts to trespassing. Yet, it took the DOJ all this time to finally find a reason to charge the one man who was caught on tape allegedly instigating the riot itself?

Perhaps the case against Epps is more complex than thought. That’s the only thing I can think of as a reasonable explanation. If there are actual communications and some type of conspiracy involved, that could explain the long investigation time. I certainly don’t think the DOJ took Republican complaints about bias in the justice system into account, which is what the lawsuit purports.


Again, though, I must reiterate that he hasn’t actually been charged yet. His lawyers are saying the DOJ told him he would be, but until there’s something officially filed by the federal government, all of this is based on some level of speculation. I will say that if Epps doesn’t end up charged after this whole song and dance, you can expect the conspiracy theories to go into overdrive, and it’ll all be justified.


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