NewsCrime and Courts


Great Falls man enters plea for participating in U.S. Capitol riot

Posted at 7:40 AM, Nov 14, 2023

GREAT FALLS — Patrick William O'Brien of Great Falls has pleaded guilty for his actions during the riot at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.

O'Brien, 54 years old, was arrested on January 5, 2023, in Great Falls and was initially charged with four misdemeanors, including entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds; disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building; disorderly conduct on capitol grounds; and parading, demonstrating, or picketing in the capitol building.

By entering his guilty plea, the government has agreed to drop the counts of entering and remaining in a restricted building, disorderly and disruptive conduct, and disorderly conduct

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, O’Brien drove to D.C. from Montana with his juvenile son.

The prosecution alleges that O’Brien and his son were in the Capitol building for around 28 minutes and could be seen in footage in the rotunda waving a Gadsden flag.

Sentencing is set for January 8th in D.C. O’Brien could face up to six months in prison.

O’Brien is the eighth known Montana resident charged for alleged actions that day.