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Schiller Park Man Charged With Assaulting Cops During Capitol Riot

Aug 14, 2023

CHICAGO — A northwest suburban man accused of attacking police during the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot was arrested Wednesday.

Robin Lee Reierson, 68, of Schiller Park, was charged with two felonies — civil disorder and assaulting, resisting or impeding officers on the lower west terrace of the U.S. Capitol.

Reierson also faces five misdemeanor charges, including engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds, act of physical violence in the Capitol grounds or buildings and disorderly conduct in a capitol building.

Wearing a brown jacket, a gray hoodie, light-colored gloves, jeans and a black motorcycle or welding helmet, Reierson used his body to push on a metal barrier held by officers in an attempt to breach their lines, according to the FBI. He is also accused of physically pushing officers and trying to take possession of one officer's baton.

A conviction for assaulting an officer with physical contact is punishable by up to eight years in federal prison, while civil disorder is punishable with a sentence of up to five years. Each of the misdemeanors carries a maximum sentence of one year in prison.

According to an affidavit from an agent investigating the case, the FBI received an online tip on Jan. 13, 2021, that an employee of Argonne National Laboratory, the federally funded research center in Lemont, may have been involved in the rioting in Washington, D.C., the prior week.

Reierson was identified by the FBI and a local police officer who had been dispatched to his Schiller Park home a few months after the riot, matching his driver's license photo with footage of the riot.

In January, an officer from an FBI task force staked out the Schiller Park home and spotted Reierson leaving.

Then, the following month, the FBI agent investigating the case spotted him leave the house in the same cargo van with the same license plate that was traced from Illinois to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 5, 2021, and back to Illinois on Jan. 7, 2021.

Reierson's credit card purchases show he rented a room at a Holiday Inn in Arlington, Virginia, where he checked in the day before the riot and left the day after.

He also took vacation days from his job on Jan. 5 through Jan. 8, according to the FBI affidavit.

Reierson was a lead welder at Argonne National Lab, where he had worked for more than four decades, a spokesperson for the lab told the Chicago Tribune.

According to the Tribune, Reierson, whose attorney described the evidence against him as "rather weak," kept his hand and forearm covering his face during his initial court hearing Wednesday in Chicago.

Reierson is at least the 40th Illinois resident to be charged in connection with the Capitol Riot, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

As of earlier this month, 33 have pleaded guilty or been found guilty at trial, while six others are still awaiting trial.

Reierson is due back in court for a remote hearing Aug. 31.

Jonah Meadows