Karen Jones spoke openly about her participation in the January 6 riot during an amateur comedy show in Texas. | Credit: Courtesy

Karen Jones, the first Santa Barbara County resident to be identified among the pro-Trump mob that attacked the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, spoke openly about her participation in the riot during an amateur comedy show this week in Texas.

After a short stand-up set on the Kill Tony live podcast, Jones is interviewed by the hosts, comedians Tony Hinchcliffe and Theo Von. “We’re meeting a real one tonight, ladies and gentlemen,” says Hinchcliffe. 

Jones ― a two-time candidate for county supervisor who currently serves as vice president of the Santa Ynez Valley Community Services District ― says she, her husband, and three friends had RSVPed to a “permitted event” at the Capitol and were within their rights to enter the building. 

“I have been to the Capitol multiple times on a weekday, and there has never been any reason not to go in,” she said. “I didn’t do anything that I thought was illegal.” Jones emphasized she only entered the “public” section of the building on January 6 and never a “private office” or other “restricted area.” Watch the full exchange here. 

Cell phone video from that day shows Jones leading a first wave of protestors, which had just fought its way through a line of police, in the Pledge of Allegiance on the Capitol steps before it breached the eastern doors. Security camera footage then places Jones and her husband in the Rotunda as officers are grabbed and beaten nearby.

Jones also told the podcast hosts that FBI agents visited her home shortly after the riot, though federal records show she has not been charged with any crimes. Jones said one of the three friends who joined her “is a very well-known starlet from a TV show in the ’80s whose name I can’t say” because authorities have not yet identified her.

Jones has not responded to multiple requests for comment. The Santa Ynez Community Services District — a local tax-collecting agency that provides sewer and streetlight services to residents — has also declined to comment.


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