Texas man who stormed US Capitol with beer pleads guilty

By Kevin Krause

DALLAS — He posted online that he doesn’t always storm the Capitol but that when he does, he prefers Coors Light.

Now Thomas Paul Conover, 53, from Keller is facing up to six months in prison after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor charge related to the Jan. 6 attack, according to court records.

Conover boasted on social media of enjoying a cold one in the U.S. Capitol but didn’t do any damage and isn’t accused of being violent. He is the fourth North Texas rioter — among about two dozen total defendants to date — to admit guilt in the massive case. He is scheduled to be sentenced in April.

Conover pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds and agreed to pay $500 in restitution to cover damage to the Capitol, which is estimated to total $1.5 million. The agreement was signed on Dec. 22, and Conover entered his guilty plea in court via a video feed on Jan. 7, court records show.

Conover was arrested Dec. 8 and released after his initial court appearance in a Fort Worth court, records show.

The FBI says he flew from Dallas to Washington, D.C., and was among the mob that forced its way into the Capitol building during the Jan. 6, 2021, uprising. He documented his activities that day in Facebook photos and videos, federal authorities said. Those posts later helped the FBI identify him after a tipster called with information, records say.

After leaving the Capitol building, Conover continued taking selfies and posing for photos with his beer can, the FBI said.

“Greetings from Washington, D.C. We took the Capital,” he said in one post, according to court records.

And in a video he recorded, Conover said, “I don’t always storm the Capitol of the United States of America, but when I do, I prefer Coors Light,” court records show.

He also recorded several videos from inside the Capitol rotunda, saying in one: “It’s really kind of cool. I’m glad I came,” the FBI says.

An attorney for Conover, a dent repairman, could not be reached Monday for comment.

More than 700 people nationwide have been charged in connection with the insurrection.

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