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Home / Santa Ana protest

Capitol riot defendant faces arrest warrant in Orange County case

A 52-year-old felon facing charges of attacking two people at a “Stop the Steal” rally and counterprotest outside Santa Ana College  as well as participating in attempts to breach the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6 insurrection was facing a warrant for his arrest for failing to appear in court Tuesday in Santa Ana.

Kim Michael Sorgente called in to court at 8:55 a.m. to report he was too ill to attend his scheduled preliminary hearing and when he was told he could make an appearance via phone he declined to do so, according to court records.

Orange County Superior Court Judge Michael Murray issued a bench warrant for the arrest of Sorgente, who is out on $100,000 bail, but it was put on hold until Friday.

Murray ordered Sorgente to provide a COVID-19 test result or a letter from a doctor by Friday, according to court records.

Sorgente, who is representing himself without an attorney, sought a delay in his preliminary hearing in a motion earlier this month because he “is in pain, which has greatly diminished the ability to focus.”

Sorgente complained that when he was in custody he was forced to attend a court hearing while experiencing abdominal pain and was then later advised to have his spleen removed. He also claimed he needs surgery for a rotator cuff injury he suffered during the conflict in the protest.

Sorgente also said he was experiencing homelessness.

Sorgente was named in a complaint Oct. 21, 2021, in federal court in Washington, D.C., charging him with civil disorder and being in a restricted building or grounds. The federal investigation began March 15, 2021, just two days before he was charged with two counts of assault with a deadly weapon related to the Dec. 6 protest at 17th and Bristol streets in Santa Ana, according to court records.

Sorgente is charged with two felony counts of assault with a deadly weapon in the Santa Ana protest case. He is accused of attacking two people with a megaphone, according to the criminal complaint.

Sorgente was arrested by the FBI in October 2021, a day after he appeared in court in the Central Justice Center in Santa Ana on the assault with a deadly weapon case.

Sorgente was convicted of carjacking May 7, 1996, in San Bernardino County Superior Court, according to court records.

The FBI agent assigned to the federal case contacted Santa Ana detectives for help identifying Sorgente.

Sorgente, wearing a Make America Great Again baseball cap, can be seen in photos from the insurrection with a megaphone. According to the FBI, he can be seen just after 1:30 p.m. Jan. 6 along with “numerous rioters” at a police line on the west side of the Capitol.

The FBI alleged that at one point during a fracas with police he used his megaphone to shout at officers, “How dare you? How dare you, traitors? How dare you traitors?”

Sorgente was seen again in other body-worn camera police footage just after 2 p.m. near the base of the inauguration scaffolding ignoring a command to leave the area, according to the FBI.

The FBI alleged that as officers attempted to clear the area, Sorgente shouted at them with his megaphone, “What are you doing? What are you doing? How does it feel to be a traitor? How does it feel to be a traitor? What the (expletive) do you think you’re doing?”

By 2:40 p.m., the FBI alleged, he had moved over to the west side of the Capitol, where he entered a tunnel as officers were attempting to keep the crowd at bay.

Sorgente allegedly left but then turned around and again went into the tunnel at 2:54 p.m., the FBI said.

He offered water to several other people on scene and then joined efforts to push against the officers “at times rocking together in a coordinated fashion,” the FBI alleged.

“Several rioters threw objects at the officers and used poles to strike at the officers,” the FBI said.

It appears at some point Sorgente used water to wash tear gas out of his eyes, the FBI said.

At 3:48 p.m., the body-worn camera footage shows him joining others pushing against a police line in an archway to force their way into the tunnel, the FBI said. Again, the crowd “moved back and forth in a coordinated manner” to break through the police line, the FBI said.

About 4:30 p.m., Sorgente can be seen being pushed out of the archway by police as he hollered, “Oh God, don’t do it. Oh my God, you hurt me bad! Please! Please! Ah, I got hit in the head. I’m bleeding now,” according to the FBI.

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