On March 14, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Larry Giberson ’23 was arrested in relation to the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021.
According to the DOJ, images and video from Jan. 6 show Giberson and a group of rioters coordinating a “‘heave-ho’ pushing effort” in an attempt to weave their way into the Capitol through the Lower West Terrace “tunnel” entrance. At the tunnel, one Capitol police officer was dragged into the crowd. The DOJ states Giberson started chanting “Drag them out!” and cheered as weapons and pepper spray were used on Capitol police officers in the tunnel.
In an interview with the FBI, conducted in Princeton, Giberson confirmed he was the individual identified in the photographs and will make his first appearance in federal court on March 21, according to the DOJ.
“We cannot comment on the truth or falsity of the specific allegations in the complaint while the case remains pending other than to note that even the government agrees Mr. Giberson has been cooperative throughout the investigation,” Giberson wrote in a statement to the ‘Prince.’
“We ask all interested parties to respect the presumption of innocence and withhold judgment until the Court process is complete,” he continued.
The DOJ Task Force Officer assigned to the case noticed a possible match to a student in “the Princeton University French and Italian Department.” As Princeton’s student directory shows, Giberson is majoring in politics. According to University spokesperson Michael Hotchkiss, “Larry F. Giberson Jr. is currently enrolled as an undergraduate at the University.”
Since the riot, the DOJ has charged over one thousand people with crimes related to the riot at the Capitol on Jan. 6 that disrupted a joint session of Congress which later confirmed Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential election. About 140 police officers were assaulted during the conflict.
518 of these defendants have pleaded guilty and, according to the DOJ, will likely “face incarceration at sentencing.” Another 53 have been found guilty at trial. Over 200 rioters have already been sentenced to periods of incarceration.
On campus, Giberson sent an email to the Mathey Mail listserv, reaching about one sixth of the student body, opposing the University’s decision to remove the name of former President Woodrow Wilson Class of 1879 from the public policy school and then-Wilson College in June 2020. The email was also published the same day as a guest contribution in the Princeton Tory. Giberson wrote, “If our University can be intimidated by the transient impulses of the mob mentality to disregard their own esteemed standards, what guarantee is there that the University will stand firm against those who would seek to undermine the Nation, or indeed, Humanity itself?”
Julian Hartman-Sigall is an assistant News editor for the ‘Prince.’
Bridget O’Neill is an assistant News editor for the ‘Prince.’
Correction: This piece previously stated that Giberson’s first federal court appearance would take place on March 21. It was March 14.
Editor’s Note: This piece has been updated to include comment from Giberson as of 12:25 pm on March 13.
Please direct any correction requests to corrections[at]dailyprincetonian.com.