A State Lawmaker Livestreamed the Invasion of the Capitol: ‘Keep It Moving, Baby!’

January 7, 2021 Off By Carter Sherman

A newly elected state lawmaker was among throngs of rioters who breached the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, and shared his decision to break into the seat of American democracy by posting a video on social media.

Footage from West Virginia state delegate Derrick Evans has since been deleted, but in segments still preserved on social media, he can be seen amid the mob, narrating Trump supporters forcing their way into Congress. At one point, he shouts, “We’re in! We’re in! Let’s go! Keep it moving, baby!”

“Derrick Evans is in the Capitol!” he yells, referring to himself in the third person in another preserved video.

On Wednesday, after Trump spent weeks falsely claiming that he had won the 2020 presidential election, he held a rally in the morning and encouraged the crowd to walk towards the Capitol.

“You’ll never take back our country with weakness,” he told rally goers. “You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.”

Hundreds of pro-Trump rioters physically fought with police officers, smashed in windows, and marauded through congressional lawmakers’ offices. Their invasion forced the Senate and the House to temporarily shut down their plans to certify Joe Biden’s presidential victory, sending legislators into lockdown. One woman was shot and killed by police during the fray. Three other people died of what police are calling “medical emergencies.”

In a statement posted to Facebook on Wednesday, Evans said he filmed an “event” in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, and portrayed himself as part of the media.

“As many of you know, for the last few years, I have traveled across the country to film many events,” he wrote. “Today, I had the opportunity to film another event in D.C. I want to assure you all that I did not have any negative interactions with law enforcement nor did I participate in any destruction that may have occurred.”

“I was simply there as an independent member of the media to film history,” he added, never mentioning at any point that he is a member of the West Virginia legislature.

Evans’ office didn’t immediately respond to VICE News’ request for comment.

Evans’ Facebook history is riddled with posts that include the hashtag “#StoptheSteal,” a reference to the false conspiracy theory perpetuated by Trump that the 2020 presidential election was fraudulent. One of his posts on Jan. 5 includes a photo of a bus full of people—whom he calls “Patriots from WV, KY, and Ohio”—apparently destined for the rally in Washington, D.C.

Another post on his Facebook page suggests that Joe Biden is sexually abusing children, an unfounded QAnon conspiracy. Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., has previously insinuated that Biden is a pedophile, but later dismissed it as a joke.

Evans is now facing calls to leave office from West Virginia Democrats. Doug Skaff, the minority leader of the West Virginia House of Delegates, has sent a letter to the house speaker requesting that Evans be disqualified from serving in the legislative body.

Nearly 35,000 people have signed an online petition calling for Evans’ ouster.

Several other Republican state lawmakers also put in appearances at the rally in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. Alaska state Rep. David Eastman, Pennsylvania state Sen. Doug Mastriano, and Missouri state Rep. Justin Hill have said that they didn’t participate in the invasion of the Capitol and said that they did not support it. Their offices didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from VICE News.

More than 50 members of the Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department, which works in D.C., were injured in the riot Wednesday, according to authorities. Several were hospitalized. Dozens of people have been arrested.