FBI Wants Accused Capitol Rioter From Wylie to Unlock His Computer With His Face or His PIN

Prosecutors want a judge to order Wylie man to unlock his Surface Pro

A Wylie man made headlines after being arrested for his alleged role in the riot at the U.S. Capitol. When Guy Reffitt returned home, the FBI said he threatened his family if they turned him in. For the first time, his family is speaking out about the incident.

Arguing it might contain incriminating videos and other information, federal prosecutors are trying to force a Collin County man jailed in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot to unlock his computer by either facial recognition or with a code.

Guy Reffitt of Wylie traveled to Washington with a rifle and a handgun to participate in the insurrection, the FBI said. He packed his pistol in a holster and wore a black tactical helmet with a camera attached as he charged at Capitol police officers, according to prosecutors.

Reffitt, a reputed member of the militia group known as “Three Percenters,” was arrested at his Wylie home on Jan. 16.

In a search, agents seized his Surface Pro laptop computer but have been unable to access it.

In a motion, prosecutors are asking a judge to order Reffitt to “place his face in front of the computer’s camera so that the computer can be biometrically unlocked” or, if that doesn't work, to type his passcode or PIN into the device.

An examination of Reffitt’s helmet camera revealed three video files were deleted just a few days after the Capitol attack. Two of them were titled “DC,” according to the motion.

“The government believes that at least these three video files may have been transferred (to the Surface Pro),” a prosecutor wrote.

A hearing before a federal judge in Washington is set for Wednesday.

In a response, Reffitt’s lawyer noted the government allowed its search warrant to expire without taking action previously.

“Reffitt does not believe he used either a passcode or PIN, but if he did, after more than five months, he does not remember what it would be,” Reffitt’s lawyer wrote in a response.

The lawyer, William Welch of Columbia, Maryland, did not specifically argue against Reffitt being forced to unlock the computer by facial recognition and wrote that “an attempt to biometrically unlock might be appropriate.”

Reffitt also is accused of threatening family members if they turned him in and planned separate attacks on the “mainstream media,” “Silicon Valley” and “Big Tech.”

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