SAN JOSE — A Gilroy woman who operates a yoga studio has been charged with two misdemeanors in connection with the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, court records show.
Mariposa Castro was charged Jan. 21 in Washington D.C. and was arrested in the Bay Area earlier this month, according to recently unsealed court records. She faces one count of knowingly entering or remaining in restricted grounds without lawful authority, and one count of violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds. If convicted as charged she faces up to a year in prison.
The case was investigated by the FBI and the U.S. Secret Service. The evidence against her was mostly derived from videos Castro posted to her Facebook account on Jan. 6, according to the criminal complaint.
“As Castro climbed into the Capitol building, she narrated: ‘I’m going in. I’m going in. I’m going in the Capitol. We’re in. We’re inside the Capitol house. We got inside the Capitol,’” an FBI agent wrote in the complaint. Later, Castro reportedly said on another video she “had to get out of there” because police “released some gases.”
In another video, Castro was seen walking alongside another individual who yelled, “Traitors will be shot,” the complaint alleges. Castro reportedly joined him in his chants, shouting, “This is war,” and “We’re coming.”
In another post, Castro wrote she would be releasing more videos from Jan. 6, adding, “I’m ok but I can feel aches and pains. I was bleeding from my nose this morning…I have sooooo (sic) much proof of what happened on the 1-6-21 (sic).” Later, in another post, Castro complained about being in “Facebook jail” and said she was forced to use an alternate account, the complaint says.
The charging records refer to Castro as being “well-known” in the Gilroy community due to “counter-protest activities.” Federal agents attempted to contact Castro at her Gilroy home on Jan. 15, but she didn’t answer the door, the complaint alleges.
Castro was released from jail this week at her first court appearance. Her case is being formally transferred from the Bay Area to federal court Washington D.C. for prosecution, and her next court date has been set for Feb. 16 before a duty magistrate judge there, court records show.
The FBI website lists nearly 200 people who have been charged in connection with the riot. As of Friday afternoon, Castro’s name had not been added to the list. Federal authorities continue to look for many dozens of other people suspected of breaching the Capitol Building on Jan. 6.