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Capitol Rioter Learns A Brutal Lesson After Trying To Evade The FBI By Restoring His iPhone To Factory Settings

Capitol Rioter Learns A Brutal Lesson After Trying To Evade The FBI By Restoring His iPhone To Factory Settings
U.S. Department of Justice

The investigation surrounding the storming of the Capitol on January 6, 2021, is ongoing. Another intruder has been identified, Jeffrey Register, who thought he could pull a fast one on the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Register was previously questioned back on February 24 about any potential involvement in the insurrection, since he was in the area at the time of the event. At the time, he denied being one of the rioters who stormed the Capitol.

But the FBI then hit Register with photographic evidence, with images of him available from the back, side and front including full-face visibility.

According to the FBI record, they were able to track him because of his distinctive appearance:

"[The] affiant identified REGISTER as a White male with black glasses and a salt-and-pepper beard."
"Register was wearing dark pants, tan shoes, and two sweatshirts. The inner hooded sweatshirt was black."
"Over that, Register was wearing a green or gray hoodie sweatshirt, the back of which featured an American flag and lettering that stated, 'God, Guns, & Trump.'"
"Under the inner black hooded sweatshirt's hood, Register wore a black skull cap with lettering stating, '2020 Keep America Great.'"
"Throughout the [investigation], I identified Register based on his facial features, his distinctive facial hair, and the lettering and image on the back of his sweatshirt."

U.S. Department of Justice

Because of this evidence, Register backtracked and admitted he had been a part of the insurrection.

Register also admitted trying to cover up his involvement by deleting all of the history from his iPhone and later returning it to factory settings. He believed this would be enough to cover his tracks.

The FBI was already ahead of him, however, and was able to track his phone using neighboring cell towers.

"According to records obtained through a search warrant served on Google LLC, a mobile device associated with [email redacted] was present at the U.S. Capitol on January 6."
"The name associated with that account, according to Google, is Jeffrey Register."

They were also able to pinpoint Register's placement in the Capitol and the time he was there (spoiler alert: it was during the riot).

"Google reports that its 'maps, display, [and] radius' reflects the actual location of the device 68% of the time. In this case, Google location data shows that [Register's device was in the Capitol] 'from approximately 2:17 PM until 4:38 PM.'"
"Google records show that the 'maps, display' radius for this location data was less than 100 feet, which encompasses an area that is entirely within the U.S. Capitol Building."

The FBI's final piece of evidence against Register, ironically, had nothing to do with his phone, but what someone else posted online.

The images the FBI used that encouraged Register to confess were pulled from a video another insurrectionist uploaded on YouTube. From this, the FBI was able to follow much of Register's progress through the Capitol, as his unique appearance repeatedly gave him away.

They noted him running past the police who were trying to keep people from entering the building. He was also noted in multiple locations throughout the Capitol building, as well as ignoring the demands of a guard to leave.

People online could not understand Register's thought process.

The investigation into those involved in the insurrection continues. More people will undoubtedly be identified with time.

Who knows what the FBI will discover next, or what the next insurrectionist might have up their sleeve to try to stay hidden.