A Chicago man named Brad Rukstales admitted he was inside the U.S. Capitol during the riot on Wednesday and said it was “the single worst personal decision of” his life.
Rukstales was arrested for unlawful entry and being in violation of a curfew amid violent pro-Trump riots that saw hundreds break into the nation’s Capitol as lawmakers were voting to certify the election for President-Elect Joe Biden.
When CBS News Chicago confronted Rukstales and asked if he was inside the Capitol, he said “I was.”
“It was the single worst personal decision of my life; I have no excuse for my actions and wish that I could take them back,” Rukstales told CBS News Chicago once back home. (RELATED: How The Trump March Went From Political Rally To Violent Riot In Just 2 Hours)
— Charlie De Mar (@CharlieDeMar) January 8, 2021
“I think the violence was terrible. It was great to see a whole bunch of people together in the morning and hear the speeches, but yeah, it turned into chaos,” he continued. “I had nothing to do with charging anybody or anything or doing any of that. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time and I regret my part in that.”
Rukstales is the CEO of Cogensia, a tech company, and has reportedly been placed on leave of absence, according to a statement from the company on Twitter.
“Our CEO, Brad Rukstales’ participated in the recent Washington DC protests,” according to the tweet. “Those actions were his own and not acting on behalf Cogensia nor do his actions in any way reflect the policies or values of our firm.”
Our CEO, Brad Rukstales’ participated in the recent Washington DC protests. Those actions were his own and not acting on behalf Cogensia nor do his actions in any way reflect the policies or values of our firm. He has been placed on leave of absence while we assess further.
— Cogensia (@Cogensia) January 8, 2021
After his comments to CBS News Chicago, Rukstales issued a formal statement, the publication wrote:
In a moment of extremely poor judgment following the Jan. 6 rally in Washington, I followed hundreds of others through an open set of doors to the Capitol building to see what was taking place inside. I was arrested for the first time in my life and charged with unlawful entry.
My decision to enter the Capitol was wrong, and I am deeply regretful to have done so. Without qualification and as a peaceful and law-abiding citizen, I condemn the violence and destruction that took place in Washington.
I offer my sincere apologies for my indiscretion, and I deeply regret that my actions have brought embarrassment to my family, colleagues, friends and fellow countrymen.
It was the single worst personal decision of my life; I have no excuse for my actions and wish that I could take them back.
The riot at the Capitol resulted in five deaths. One woman was shot by an officer as she attempted to enter the House Chamber and three others died of “medical emergencies,” according to police. One officer was also injured in the riot has reportedly since died.