Jay Johnston of ‘Bob’s Burgers’ to Plead Guilty in Jan. 6 Case

Jay Johnston of ‘Bob’s Burgers’ to Plead Guilty in Jan. 6 Case

The actor Jay Johnston, who voiced Jimmy Pesto Sr. on the animated Fox sitcom “Bob’s Burgers,” has agreed to plead guilty in the federal case against him over his participation in the riot at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

The authorities arrested Mr. Johnston, 55, in California last summer and charged him with four counts, including civil disorder and entering restricted grounds. Mr. Johnston agreed to plead guilty to a single count of civil disorder in exchange for the other charges being dropped, according to a person familiar with the case who spoke on condition of anonymity. A plea agreement hearing is scheduled for July 8 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

A civil disorder charge carries a maximum prison sentence of five years, or a fine or both.

Mr. Johnston was a regular on the groundbreaking 1990s television comedy “Mr. Show with Bob and David” and later had recurring roles on “The Sarah Silverman Program” and “Arrested Development.” His movie credits included “Anchorman” and “Men in Black II.”

He was quickly named by internet sleuths when the F.B.I. published photos of him at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in asocial media post asking for the public’s help identifying him.

The authorities also identified Mr. Johnston in police body camera and security footage of him pushing against officers and helping rioters push through a tunnel entrance into the Capitol, according to an affidavit prepared by the F.B.I.

He is seen taking photos of the crowd, signaling others to join the push and giving water to rioters, who used it to wash their eyes out, according to the affidavit.

Additionally, three people who know Mr. Johnston identified him to investigators in the images at the Capitol. One of those people showed investigators a text message sent by Mr. Johnston in which he admitted to having been at the Capitol.

“The news has presented it as an attack,” the message stated, according to court documents. “It actually wasn’t. Thought it kind of turned into that. It was a mess. Got maced and tear gassed and I found it quite untastic.”

Mr. Johnston had also booked a round trip from Los Angeles to Washington D.C., with his departing flight on Jan, 4, 2021 and his return set for three days later, according to court documents.

The Daily Beast, an online news site, reported in December 2021 that Mr. Johnston lost his job voicing Jimmy Pesto Sr. on “Bob’s Burgers” after allegations spread that he had been at the Capitol.

Mr. Johnston is one of more than 1,500 people to be charged for actions related to the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, according to the Justice Department. He is set to join the more than 800 people who have pleaded guilty to charges.

Alan Feuer contributed reporting.

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