Freeport man charged in connection to Capitol riot surrenders, makes court appearance
The Freeport man charged in connection to the U.S. Capitol riot has surrendered and appeared in court in Central Islip Tuesday.
Thomas Fee is set to make his first court appearance nearly two weeks after investigators say he was among hundreds to storm the Capitol.
Fee has been charged with knowingly entering/remaining in any restricted building without lawful authority and violent entry/disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds.
Investigators say a photo of Fee inside the Capitol Rotunda was shared with the Joint Terrorism Task Force. Fee's girlfriend also allegedly posted about his presence on Facebook.
Court papers say a special agent with the U.S. Diplomatic Security Service contacted Fee over text about the post. According to the documents, Fee sent the agent, who happens to be Fee's girlfriend's brother, a selfie from the Rotunda and a video in which rioters can be heard yelling "tyranny" and "Pelosi."
Investigators say the agent originally deleted the items from his phone, but they were recovered.
Fee was a member of the FDNY for 22 years until his retirement in October 2020. He also is a member of the Freeport Fire Department. Both departments publicly condemned unlawful behavior and violence of any kind in the wake of his charges.
The FDNY fire Commissioner issued a statement that said in part that while the department respects members rights to support social and political positions, it goes on to say, "While exercising those rights, members must act with the utmost discretion and respect for others ... conduct that crosses the line into violence or threats against others will be referred to the relevant law enforcement authorities."
Despite having his first appearance in Central Islip, investigators say Fee's trial will take place in Washington, D.C.
Fee was released on a $100,000 bond, secured by his Freeport home. He must not travel outside Long Island or New York City. He must not speak to any co-conspirators and he was directed to turn over any firearms.