A Capitol rioter from Western Pennsylvania nicknamed “JackTheTripper” by online sleuths because he tripped a police officer and sent him tumbling down a flight of stairs admitted to his crimes Tuesday in federal court in Washington, D.C., and faces up to 63 months in prison.

Mikhail Slye, 32, of Meadville, pleaded guilty to assaulting and impeding police, a felony.

Slye is among some two dozen people from Western Pennsylvania charged with storming the Capitol in support of Donald Trump’s lies that the election was stolen.

No evidence has emerged to support that contention, and the Justice Department is weighing charges against Trump for his role in the attack.

Slye was identified by seditionhunters.org, a group that has helped the FBI track down rioters, after video showed him throwing a bike barricade in front of an officer identified as D.T., causing him to trip and fall down the stairs. Other video shows Slye getting pepper-sprayed and another rioter helping him wash out his eyes.

Slye also gave an interview at the Capitol about why he was rioting that was posted on YouTube.

In addition, a witness came forward in June 2021 who also identified Slye, while a second witness who was friends with Slye on Facebook said he or she had received notice on the day of the riot that Slye was recording live from the Trump rally in Washington.

In court on Tuesday, prosecutors recounted Slye’s actions that day, saying he traveled to D.C. on Jan. 6 to attend Trump’s rally and then entered the Capitol at 2:56 p.m. through the Senate Wing doors.

He came out three minutes later, then went back in at 3:05 and walked around inside, exiting at 3:35. He then walked to the north side of the building and saw rioters battling police.

At 4:14, a group of police exited the north doors and were about to descend the stairs to an area where an officer had pulled his gun to hold off a group of rioters who had surrounded him.

Slye was standing near the bottom of the stairs as the police came down and threw the bike rack in front of them. D.T. tripped over it and fell down the stairs, hurting his hand, shins and thumb.

A few minutes later, prosecutors said, Slye began shouting at the officers, including D.T., as they tried to re-enter the building. Slye yelled that they were “traitors,” “Nazis” and “f—–g bitches” while spitting at them as they sprayed the crowd with mace and a fire extinguisher.

Slye had initially been charged in September. As the case proceeded, the government had asked the judge, James Boasberg, to prevent Slye from arguing at trial that police had allowed the rioters into the building. Other rioters have made a similar claim. Boasberg denied the request as moot after the plea.

The judge said he would sentence Slye in April.

Torsten covers the courts for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, but he's currently on strike. Reach him at jtorsteno@gmail.com.

Torsten Ove

Torsten covers the courts for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, but he's currently on strike. Reach him at jtorsteno@gmail.com.