Citadel cadet suspended after role in Capitol riot, guilty plea

A Citadel cadet has been suspended from the military college after pleading guilty for his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot.
Published: Dec. 14, 2022 at 3:36 PM EST|Updated: Dec. 14, 2022 at 4:22 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - A Citadel cadet has been suspended from the military college after pleading guilty for his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot.

Elias Irizarry, 21, was arrested in March of 2021 after several people who know him identified him to federal officials.

Irizarry drove to Washington D.C. the night of Jan. 5, spending the night in a hotel with two friends, according to the Statement of Offense released by the Department of Justice following his guilty plea on Oct. 26, 2022.

The York County teen, who was a freshman at the time, is seen several times on cameras in the Capitol Building during the incident and is seen with a metal pipe in his hand.

As Irizarry and the two others approached the west side of the Capitol building, they saw downed metal bicycle barricades and broken fencing around the Capitol building, according to documents from the DOJ. Another rioter gave Irizarry a metal pole from the barricade, which he then carried inside the Capitol building.

The Citadel issued the following statement when asked about Irizarry’s status at the college:

Following a Commandant’s Board, he was found to have violated The Citadel’s policies for “Conduct Unbecoming a Cadet.” A suspension requires a cadet or student to leave the college for one semester; they may reapply for admission after that time. The Citadel will have no further comment on his status at this time.

Irizarry’s guilty plea and suspension comes after other South Carolinians face charges in the Capitol attacks.

Irizarry’s sentencing is set for March 15, 2023.