On December 29, the House Committee on January 6 released a transcript of their interview with Ray Epps , an Arizona man and former Oath Keeper involved in the Capitol Breach on January 6, 2021.
In his testimony, Epps stated that he was a supporter of former President Donald Trump and only attended the rally to protect his son, who was also present, The Epoch Times reports.
Epps denied any connection to federal law enforcement and said, “No” when asked if he had ever worked in law enforcement or for the FBI.
When asked if he had any communications with law enforcement while packing first aid for the trip to Washington D.C., Epps replied, “Not that I know of, no, Sir. I didn’t – I don’t know of any officers that I ever talked to.”
During a Senate hearing on January 11, 2022, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas asked FBI Executive Assistant Director Jill Sanborn if Epps worked for the FBI.
Sanborn stated that she was aware of Epps but did not have specific information on him and did not confirm or deny whether Epps was a federal government employee.
On the night of January 5, Epps claimed that he was trying to protect his family from a person known as “Baked Alaska,” a right-wing internet celebrity who was inciting violence against the police and trying to get others to join in.
Epps said that he tried to deescalate the situation and told Baked Alaska that “this was not what we’re about. We need to stay focused. You guys are – are not right. You shouldn’t be doing this with the police.”
However, Epps was also caught on video telling the crowd to go into the Capitol the next day, saying, “Tomorrow we need to go in to the Capitol. In to the Capitol,” which prompted some in the crowd to shout, “Fed! Fed! Fed!”, a slang term for federal agents.
Epps described the gathering on the evening of January 5 as chaotic, with people yelling about various topics and trying to incite Trump supporters to join their causes.
The former Oath Keeper said, “I believe that they were trying to get Trump supporters to – to back their cause. So, I tried to deescalate it… I went over to the guy that calls himself Baked Alaska and had words with him, that this was not what we’re about. We need to stay focused.”
Epps claimed that he only encouraged people to go into the Capitol the next day in order to protect his family and deescalate the situation.
In a text message cited by the committee, the Arizona man claimed to have been “in the front with a few others” and to have “orchestrated” the attack, American Faith reported earlier this week.
When asked to explain his use of the term “orchestrate,” Epps stated that he “helped get people there.”