Jay Johnston, ‘Bob’s Burgers’ Actor, Is Arrested on Jan. 6 Charges

Jay Johnston, a comic actor known for his work on the animated sitcom “Bob’s Burgers,” was arrested in California on Wednesday and charged with felony obstruction of police officers during the riot at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

The actor was identified in police body camera footage pushing against officers and aiding other rioters at the Capitol, according to the F.B.I.

Mr. Johnston, 54, was charged on four counts, including civil disorder and entering a restricted building. An F.B.I. affidavit states that images from closed-circuit television show Mr. Johnston using a shield stolen from the Capitol Police to join a group assault on officers defending a tunnel entrance to the building.

Mr. Johnston’s name surfaced in connection with the riot in March 2021 when amateur sleuths said they recognized him in photographs shown in an F.B.I. call for tips on Twitter. Colleagues on the podcast “Harmontown” also tweeted that they recognized Mr. Johnston, who appeared in small roles on “Arrested Development” and “Anchorman,” among other comedies.

“I’m no detective, but I do know Jay,” Cassandra Church, who worked on “Harmontown” with Mr. Johnston, wrote in a tweet that has since been deleted. “He said he was there. And that’s him in the picture. So…”

The F.B.I. said three associates of Mr. Johnston’s identified him in the Jan. 6 photographs.

One associate provided the F.B.I. with a text message in which Mr. Johnston acknowledged being at the Capitol on Jan. 6, stating: “The news presented it as an attack. It actually wasn’t. Thought it kind of turned into that. It was a mess. Got maced and tear gassed.”

Mr. Johnston was also said to have assisted other rioters by pouring water over their eyes after they had been sprayed.

The Daily Beast reported in December 2021 that Mr. Johnston had been banned from voicing his recurring character, Jimmy Pesto Sr., on the Fox show “Bob’s Burgers” after the Jan. 6 riot.

More than 1,040 people have been charged in connection with the attack on the Capitol, according to the Justice Department. Prosecutors have indicated that there could be as many as another 1,000 people who might eventually face charges, according to people familiar with the matter.

The owner of a Long Island funeral home, Peter G. Moloney, was also charged on Wednesday in the department’s investigation of the riot. He is accused of spraying an insecticide at police officers guarding the Capitol and attacking members of the news media.

Last month, Richard Barnett, who was photographed with his boot on Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s desk during the attack, was sentenced to four and a half years in prison after being found guilty in January on eight criminal offenses.

Stewart Rhodes, the leader of the far-right Oath Keepers militia, received the most severe penalty so far from criminal cases stemming from the Capitol attack. He was sentenced last month to 18 years in prison for his conviction on seditious conspiracy charges.

Mr. Johnston has a long list of television and movie credits, mostly in comedic roles. He was a regular on the 1990s sketch comedy program “Mr. Show” with David Cross and Bob Odenkirk. He more recently appeared in an episode of “Better Call Saul,” starring Mr. Odenkirk.

A lawyer for Mr. Johnston did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Alan Feuer contributed reporting.

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