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Kelly makes initial court appearance, given conditional release before trial

Published: Jan. 19, 2021 at 4:30 PM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - A man who was arrested in connection to the deadly riots at the U.S. Capitol on January 6 made his first appearance in federal court on Tuesday.

Leo Christopher Kelly, of Cedar Rapids, appeared with lawyer Al Willett. He waived his right to a preliminary hearing, though federal prosecutors have yet to decide whether to ask for that hearing.

A preliminary hearing would be to determine if there’s probable cause that Kelly committed the offenses he is charged with, which include Knowingly Entering or Remaining in any Restricted Building or Grounds without Lawful Authority and Violent Entry with Intent to Disrupt the Orderly Conduct of Official Business and Disorderly Conduct on Capitol Grounds.

Magistrate Judge Mark Roberts granted Kelly a conditional pretrial release from custody, citing an “extremely limited criminal history.” As part of the judge’s terms, Kelly cannot leave the jurisdiction of the Northern District of Iowa, or Washington, D.C., with permission for court proceedings or other related activities. He must also surrender his passport, be subject to GPS monitoring, maintain full-time work, and cannot possess firearms, ammunition, or controlled substances.

Violation of the release terms could lead to additional charges, according to the judge.

Kelly’s next appearance is a status hearing, scheduled in the District of Columbia on Tuesday, Feb. 9, at 1:00 p.m. Eastern time. It was unclear, as of Tuesday’s hearing, whether Kelly would be required to attend in person.

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