Authorities seek answers in case of missing Proud Boy awaiting Jan. 6 sentencing

ByLuke Barr ABCNews logo
Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Authorities are looking for answers to the whereabouts of a member of the Proud Boys extremist group who disappeared days before his sentencing for his role in the attacks on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

Christopher Worrell, a 52-year-old from Naples, Florida, was supposed to be sentenced last Friday after he was found guilty of assaulting a police officer during the attacks on the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, according to court records. Worrell went missing from house arrest last Wednesday, according to the FBI, and the search is ongoing nearly a week later.

The FBI is now asking for the public's help in locating Worrell.

Worrell -- a self-identified member of right-wing extremist group, the Proud Boys -- pepper sprayed police during the Capitol insurrection, according to court documents.

A judge found Worrell guilty in May 2023 of assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers using a dangerous weapon, obstruction of an official proceeding of Congress, and obstructing, impeding, or interfering with officers during the commission of a civil disorder, entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon, engaging in physical violence with a deadly or dangerous weapon all felonies, and an act of physical violence in the Capitol Grounds or Buildings, a misdemeanor. The verdict followed a five-day bench trial.

"Once on Capitol grounds, Worrell spewed vitriol for half an hour at the overwhelmed officers restraining the mob," according to an Aug. 13 sentencing memo filed by the Justice Department. "And when he saw an opportunity to pepper spray the police line from deep within the crowd, Worrell took it."

On Jan. 6, Worrell, wearing a tactical vest, carried pepper gel when he marched with other Proud Boys from the Washington Monument to the Capitol, according to court records. He warned officers he passed, "don't make us go against you," according to court records.

The government was requesting 14 years in prison for Worrell for his Jan. 6 actions.

The FBI hasn't updated the public on the search for Worrell since last week. The FBI issued a warrant for violated conditions of release pending sentencing.

Worrell had been on house arrest after court records show he complained about the treatment at the D.C. jail. The federal judge allowed him to await sentencing while on house arrest.

A lawyer for Worrell did not respond to ABC News' request for comment.

More than 1,000 individuals have been arrested for crimes related to the events of Jan. 6.

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