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Thursday, January 21, 2021

January 21, 2021
Riley June Williams seen in a booking photograph obtained from the Dauphin County Prison in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, on Tuesday. Dauphin County Prison/Handout via Reuters

The 22-year-old woman accused of stealing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's laptop and planning to sell it to Russian spies has been slapped with new charges that could see her spend 20 years in jail.

The Justice Department had initially charged Riley June Williams on Sunday with entering a restricted building and disorderly conduct in relation to the January 6 Capitol riot.

But in a Tuesday court appearance US Attorney Christian Haughsby also charged Williams with theft of government property and obstruction, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

If Williams is found guilty of those charges, she could be sentenced to 20 years in jail, The Inquirer added.

Haughsby did not say whether Williams intended to sell the laptop to Russia. The FBI had previously said in a Sunday affidavit that a witness identifying as Williams' former romantic partner told authorities that Williams planned to give the laptop to a friend in Russia, who would then try to sell the device to the country's intelligence service.

In a Tuesday update to the affidavit, an unnamed FBI agent said that security tape from inside the Capitol showed Williams entering and exiting Pelosi's office.

The agent added that a person with the username "Riley" posted on the message board site Discord: "I STOLE S--- FROM NANCY POLESI" and "I DOMT CARE I TOOK NANCY POLESIS HARD DRIVES I DONT CARE KILL ME."

Screenshots from Discord showing a person named "Riley" posting about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's laptop. Justice Department

The location of the laptop, identified by the FBI agent as a Hewlett-Packard device, remains unknown.

Drew Hammill, deputy chief of staff to Pelosi, said on January 8 that the laptop was "only used for presentations."

According to the FBI's Sunday affidavit, Williams packed a bag and left her mother's home in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, some time after the Capitol riot and deleted a number of social-media accounts.

Williams was arrested in Pennsylvania on Monday, the DOJ said. CNN reported that Williams had turned herself in.


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