A Longview man indicted in connection with the Jan. 6 riots at the US Capitol has been released from a Virginia prison pending trial and sentenced to home confinement under the custody of his wife.
Ryan Nichols, 31, was also ordered to “keep out of Washington, D.C.” except in cases related to his case, according to court documents under the terms of his release. He was also ordered to avoid any contact with “anyone involved in the riots at the US Capitol … including co-defendants.”
Nichols must remain at his home 24 hours a day, except for medical and judicial exceptions and except that he is allowed to attend Sunday church services at Mobberley Baptist Church in Longview.
Nichols must also use “location monitoring technology” and not have access to the internet except to perform functions related to his case.
Nichols was initially released earlier this month by US District Judge Thomas Hogan and the terms were set during a hearing last week.
Hogan said earlier this month that he still considers Nichols a danger to society, but his imprisonment in Rappahannock, Va., has denied him access to digital evidence in a case he needs to prepare for trial next year.
The judge had previously denied prosecutors’ motion to transfer Nichols to the facility in Lewisburg, Va., saying the facility had similar problems with access to evidence.
Court documents show that Nichols traveled to Washington, D.C. on the eve of January 6, 2021 with 35-year-old Alex Kirk Harkrider from Carthage.
Harkrider, who also faces multiple charges in connection with the riot, was released in April pending trial. Since then, he has successfully petitioned twice to have his ankle monitor removed in order to travel to Louisiana to help hurricane victims.
Prosecutors argued that Nichols believed the 2020 election was rigged and was determined to prevent Congressional confirmation of the election results by any means necessary.
In Facebook messages prior to January 6, Nichols called the people who voted for President Joe Biden “true traitors to the country” and called for violence against government officials, including President Biden and Vice President Pence.
The text messages detail plans to travel to Washington, D.C., as well as Nichols’ interest in joining the nationalist organization The Proud Boys.
“Ryan Nichols advocates violence,” Nichols said in an 11-minute video posted later that evening on Facebook, according to prosecutors. “I fought. I attacked the police there and pushed them away.”
Nichols said the next day that he did “what I felt God told me”.