ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A New York mother and son have been charged with theft in aiding the disappearance of a laptop belonging to the staff of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during the Jan. 6 riot after the FBI initially raided a home 4,500 miles away in Alaska, looking for the computer.
The FBI arrested Maryann Mooney-Rondon, 55, and her son, Rafael Rondon, 23, of Watertown, New York, in connection with the stolen laptop, according to court documents. Maryann Mooney-Rondon and Rafael Rondon Maryann Mooney-Rondon and Rafael Rondon.via FBI
The FBI on Friday arrested Maryann Mooney-Rondon, 55, and her son, Rafael Rondon, 23, of Watertown, New York, in connection with the stolen laptop used only for presentations, according to court documents. Both also face other charges related to the riot at the Capitol. New details on rioter accused of stealing Nancy Pelosi’s laptop Rafael Rondon also faces possession of an unregistered sawed-off shotgun charge
The Capitol riot was well documented by those who took part. Law enforcement used photos from the social media accounts of those who took part to search for the suspects. A tip to the FBI led them to the mother and son, according to a statement of facts documented by an unnamed FBI special agent.
Both appeared in federal court Friday in Syracuse, New York, and released pending further proceedings, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of New York. A message left at a listing for Mooney-Condon in Watertown was not immediately returned Monday. Attempts to locate Rafael Rondon were not immediately successful.
Mooney-Rondon allegedly admitted to being in both the Capitol the day of the riots and Pelosi’s conference room, the document says. She allegedly provided gloves or a scarf to a man to steal the laptop without leaving fingerprints. “He asked, he said, give me — I don’t know if it was gloves or a scarf I was wearing — and like I said he scared me,” the documents quotes her as saying. There was an ethernet connected to the computer, her son told FBI agents. “If I recall, the guy was going to yank it out. I’m like, dude, don’t do that, I mean that’s, I mean just the computer, you can’t pull the cables out, it’ll ruin everything,” Mooney-Rondon said, according to the document.
Mooney-Rondon then said she believes she saw the man put the computer in his backpack. Her son told investigators that be thinks he might have pushed the computer “in his bag a little bit using a glove ’cause he didn’t want to get his fingerprints on it,” the document says. Workers at Kellogg’s U.S. cereal plants go on strike
She and her son then went to the Senate Gallery and then left the building when they saw it was overrun with protesters.
Rafael Rondon told officers that he and mother took the metro into Washington on Jan. 6 “because I’m not taking my car into the city which, the Capitol building I’m about to break into,” the FBI agent’s statement alleges. Both mother and son admitted they were the ones depicted in the photos taken at the Capitol during the riots and distributed by the FBI, the document says.