As part of the pro-Trump rioters that forced their way into the U.S. Capitol, a newly elected member of the West Virginia House of Delegates was seen on video joining the mob.
During the November election, Del. Derrick Evans, a Republican from Wayne County, West Virginia, won his first term as a state lawmaker and was sworn in last month. A video streaming throughout the day on his Facebook page showed him on the Capitol grounds just outside the building.
The video showing Evans entering the Capitol has since been deleted, however, not before copies of the video were made and shared by multiple social media users.
At one point during the video, hundreds of people are shown forcing their way into the building, and someone is heard yelling: “We’re in! We’re in! Derrick Evans is in the Capitol!”
Evans said he was on a bus heading back to West Virginia in a separate Facebook post published just after 6 p.m. He wrote that he did not have “negative interactions” with law enforcement. He said that he was not involved in “any destruction that may have occurred.”
He wrote that he’d been to D.C. “as an independent member of the media to film history.” However, Evans is not known to work as a professional journalist.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, West Virginia House Speaker Roger Hanshaw condemned the events that took place at the U.S. Capitol.
“I have not spoken to Delegate Evans about today’s events. I don’t know the specifics of his involvement. I have only seen what has been posted on social media so far, and I’m sure more details may come out soon,” Hanshaw said. “He will need to answer to his constituents and colleagues regarding his involvement in what has occurred today.”
A spokesman for Hanshaw also said that while the incident is still unfolding, the speaker’s office gathering information and “will evaluate all the potential consequences once the totality of the situation is understood.”
Belinda Biafore and Rod Snyder, who serve as West Virginia Democratic Party chair and vice-chair, called on Evans to withdraw from his seat in the House of Delegates.
— Brad McElhinny (@BradMcElhinny) January 6, 2021