A Pennsylvania man charged for taking part in the Capitol riot has committed suicide, WKBN reports.
Matthew Perna, 37, took his own life and died February 25, according to investigators. Perna pleaded guilty in December to entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds, obstruction of an official proceeding and aiding and abetting, disorderly and disruptive conduct on a restricted building or grounds and disorderly conduct in a Capitol building.
Perna was inside the Capitol building for 20 minutes and posted video of his actions to social media, according to prosecutors. He later claimed that he was pushed inside the Capitol building by the rioting mob.
An obituary posted online blames his prosecution for his suicide.
“He attended the rally on January 6, 2021, to peacefully stand up for his beliefs. After learning that the FBI was looking for him, he immediately turned himself in. He entered the Capitol through a previously opened door (he did not break in as was reported) where he was ushered in by police. He didn’t break, touch, or steal anything. He did not harm anyone, as he stayed within the velvet ropes taking pictures. For this act, he has been persecuted by many members of his community, friends, relatives, and people who had never met him. Many people were quietly supportive, and Matt was truly grateful for them. The constant delays in hearings and postponements dragged out for over a year. Because of this, Matt’s heart broke and his spirit died, and many people are responsible for the pain he endured. Matt did not have a hateful bone in his body. He embraced people of all races, income brackets, and beliefs, never once berating anyone for having different views.” the obituary read.
He was scheduled to be sentenced on April 1.
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