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Former Palm Beach County GOP leader charged in Capitol riot

Feds say Jody Tagaris, 67, took part in Jan. 6 insurrection
Jody Tagaris insurrection photos
Posted at 11:00 AM, May 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-27 12:42:02-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A former prominent player in Palm Beach County's conservative circles is facing multiple charges for her alleged role in the deadly Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Federal investigators said they were able to confirm Jody Tagaris' involvement through her own social media posts and one of her co-workers.

Tagaris, 67, has been charged with four federal misdemeanor charges, including entering and remaining in a restricted building, and disorderly and disruptive conduct on Capitol grounds.

Tagaris, who lives near Jupiter, ran for a Palm Beach County commission seat in 2002 and served as a member of the executive committee of the county's Republican Party.

According to court documents, Tagaris posted on Facebook about being at the riot including a photo of herself sitting in a broken window of the Capitol.

The photo shows a woman dressed in distinct clothing, including an American flag scarf, a unique US Olympics American flag jacket, and a red "Make America Great Again" hat with the caption, "The Capital ... back at hotel safe! Got tear gassed but okay!"

Investigators said the FBI then identified a co-worker of Tagaris, who confirmed the Facebook account belonged to Tagaris and identified her in the photo. A different anonymous tipster alerted authorities to Tagaris' photo and provided another Facebook photo of Tagaris in the same American flag jacket that showed her face uncovered, according to investigators.

According to court documents, the FBI obtained a warrant to search the Facebook account, where they found an unmasked photo of Tagaris posted on January 6 in the same attire.

Investigators said they also found statements Tagaris made on Facebook about her travels to Washington on Jan. 5 in order to attend former President Donald Trump's rally.

According to court documents, Tagaris can also be seen on surveillance video from the Capitol on Jan. 6 and an officers' body camera footage.

During the investigation, the FBI found Tagaris' listed phone number on Facebook and confirmed the number belonged to her. The FBI then got a search warrant that showed Tagaris' cell phone location data placed her at multiple locations around the US Capitol on Jan. 6.

Tagaris had a video hearing Tuesday in West Palm Beach, where she was released after posting a $50,000 bond. She will next enter a plea in federal court at an unspecified date.