Calumet man faces federal charges for US Capitol riot

National

COURTESY: Federal Bureau of Investigation

CALUMET, Mich. (WFRV/WJMN) — Multiple pictures and videos posted on Facebook led to a man in the Upper Peninsula getting arrested for his suspected involvement with the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Karl Dresch, a 40-year-old flooring installer from Calumet, faces federal charges of knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds (the U.S. Capitol) without lawful authority and impeding or disrupting official functions; violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds; and obstructing an official proceeding.

If convicted of all counts, he could spend a maximum of 21.5 years in prison.

Authorities believe Dresch posted pictures throughout the day from the scenes on the Capitol grounds to Facebook.

According to the FBI, on Jan. 12 a search warrant for the Facebook account of Dresch was issued, and Facebook provided the information and records to the FBI on Jan. 13.

“Who’s house? OUR HOUSE!” was posted with a picture as protestors stormed the building.

Court documents accuse Dresch of entering the building and posting a photograph with the title, “We are in.” The picture was specifically of the “Crypt,” which is a location under the rotunda in the center of the Capitol.

Dresch is believed to have posed for a selfie next to the statue of John Caldwell Calhoun.

Besides posting pictures and videos, Federal documents allege Dresch to have exchanged Facebook messages while inside the Capitol. “Word is police are getting ready to use tear gas.” was sent by another user, Dresch responded, “Been using it. Mask up.”

The same records show, later in the evening, Dresch approved of the events after commenting “Total Victory!” on a picture of a crowd at the Washington Monument.

Dresch also voiced his displeasure with Vice President Mike Pence commenting on a post “Mike Pence gave our country to the communist hordes, traitor scum like the rest of them, we have your back give the word and we will be back even stronger.”

After receiving a tip and reviewing all of the social media posts, the FBI conducted surveillance of Dresch’s residence in Calumet.

According to authorities, on Jan. 19 law enforcement observed Dresch at the residence. Dresch was seen driving his vehicle and law enforcement conducted a traffic stop and arrested Dresch.

The investigation has not concluded how Dresch got to and from the U.S. Capitol, but in Facebook messages, Dresch talked about riding a bus and then renting a car. However, the available evidence has not shown how Dresch ultimately traveled.

Dresch is the son of late Michigan Rep. Stephen Dresch, a Republican from Hanover, near Jackson. Stephen Dresch served one two-year term in the state House ending in 1992. He died in 2006. The Detroit News was the first to report the connection.

Karl Dresch appeared Wednesday before Magistrate Judge Maarten Vermaat in federal court in Marquette via Zoom. Dresch requested an attorney be appointed to represent him. Beth Lacasse was appointed to that job.

His case is expected to be handled in Washington, D.C., unless Dresch chooses to plead guilty to all counts in Marquette. His next court date has not yet been set.

—WOODTV.com staff contributed to this report.

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