FBI agents on Friday arrested two Pennsylvania women who were allegedly involved in the storming of the U.S. Capitol Building earlier this month and who reportedly expressed an intent to murder House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).
Agents arrested Dawn Bancroft and Diana Santos-Smith, charging them with knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building without legal authority, disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds, and violent entry.
In an affidavit filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, an FBI special agent explained how cellphone footage believed to have been taken by Bancroft show both women leaving the Capitol Building.
“We broke into the Capitol…we got inside, we did our part,” said Bancroft, who was wearing a MAGA ski cap. “We were looking for Nancy to shoot her in the friggin’ brain but we didn’t find her.”
The affidavit states:
On or about January 12, 2021, the FBI received a tip with a video purported to be filmed by BANCROFT. The video was a ‘selfie’ video which depicted BANCROFT and another woman, later identified as SANTOS-SMITH, in the process of attempting to exit the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C. The video further captured a large mob of individuals who had become bottlenecked at a Capitol exit point. During the video, BANCROFT stated, “We broke into the Capitol…we got inside, we did our part.” BANCROFT continued, “We were looking for Nancy to shoot her in the friggin’ brain but we didn’t find her.” Your affiant believes that the “Nancy” BANCROFT was referencing is Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi.
However, when prosecutors interviewed Santos-Smith, also described in the affidavit as wearing a red MAGA baseball cap, earlier this month, she said she never entered the Capitol.
Prosecutors then showed her a video of her and Bancroft inside the building, leading her to allegedly admit that she “lied” while adding that the pair did not “have a pre-planned agenda.”
Santos-Smith also told federal investigators that when she and Bancroft were approaching the Capitol Building they heard others yelling, “They’re letting us in.” Santos-Smith reportedly said she took that to mean that people were being “allowed” inside. The affidavit stated that she and Bancroft attempted to enter the building at different locations but eventually gained entry through a broken window.
Santos-Smith allegedly told prosecutors that she “knew that the should not be going inside the building,” and said neither she nor Bancroft went into any office or either congressional chamber. She said the two of them left “approximately 30 seconds to one minute” after gaining entry to the building, and that they both exited through the same window they came in.
Bancroft, who allegedly shot the video, sent it to her children but wound up deleting it and then told them to do the same thing. She reportedly provided federal investigators with additional video and images taken during the Jan. 6 incursion.
The FBI has reportedly identified some 400 suspects who allegedly took part in the Capitol riot, according to the Boston Globe. About 135 people have been arrested.
“Some of you have recognized that this was such an egregious incident that you have turned in your own friends and family members,” Steven D’Antuono, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Washington, D.C., field office, said in a press call. “We know that those decisions are often painful — but you picked up the phone because it was the right thing to do. We are grateful you made that choice. America is grateful you made that choice.”
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