Cardinals Fan 'Rally Runner' Arrested on Jan. 6 Charges

Daniel Donnelly was easy to spot in Capitol riot footage
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 3, 2023 8:20 AM CDT
Cardinals Superfan Arrested on Capitol Riot Charges
An image of Donnelly from his Jan. 6 Facebook video.   (US Attorney's Office)

With his red outfit and red face paint, St. Louis Cardinals superfan Daniel Donnelly Jr. was a familiar sight as he jogged around Busch Stadium during games. He also stood out among Capitol rioters on Jan. 6, 2021, federal prosecutors say. Donnelly—who changed his legal name to his nickname Rally Runner, according to DMV records—was indicted on five federal charges connected to the riot this week, including a felony count of civil disorder, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. He was arrested Wednesday, authorities say.

According to a criminal complaint, Donnelly was dressed all in red, including a "Keep America Great" hat, when he led protesters toward a tunnel leading to the Capitol, which was the scene of some of the day's worst violence. Court documents say photos and videos show that Donnelly held a riot shield as he helped other rioters push law enforcement officers back. "Donnelly continued to hold the line as rioters sprayed chemical irritants, threw items, and screamed at law enforcement officers," the documents state, per KSDK. Court documents also say Donnelly spoke about the riot in a 26-minute video he posted on Facebook on Jan. 6.

"I literally got further than anyone. I helped us get that far," said Donnelly in the video. "The burning of the mace was horrible," he complained. "I mean, my skin is already sensitive so I think it affected me more than others, but I withstood it pretty well." NBC News reports that Donnelly was interviewed by law enforcement in early 2021. In December that year, Joseph McBride, a lawyer for other Jan. 6 defendants, claimed on Tucker Carlson's Fox News that Rally Runner must have been a federal agent because he hadn't been arrested yet. Donnelly said he was very disappointed because he had believed Carlson was a "responsible reporter" who wouldn't spread false information. (More Capitol riot stories.)

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