The documentary filmmaker who testified last week about the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol said on Sunday that he and his crew were aware they had filmed “multiple crimes” when they followed the far-right militia Proud Boys during the rioting for a documentary about division in America.
Nick Quested told NBC’s “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd that he saw crimes “on the steps of the Capitol” and “inside the Capitol.”
After filming the events of Jan. 6, when a pro-Trump mob stormed the US Capitol in an attempt to overturn certification of the 2020 election, Quested decided to cooperate with law enforcement.
“So I called a friend of mine, who’s a US attorney,” the filmmaker said on NBC. “And he referred me to the criminal department of the DC police, who then referred me to the FBI.”
Quested, who also filmed a secret meeting between Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio and Oath Keepers leader Stewart Rhodes in a parking garage ahead of the Jan. 6 rioting, said he “instantaneously” realized they were filming dangerous material throughout the process.
“We thought it was just an optically bad thing to do when we were shooting it,” Quested said on Sunday.
Quested testified in front of the House panel investigating the Jan. 6 attempted insurrection last week. He also turned in evidence and video material to the Department of Justice and the select committee.
Both Tarrio and Rhodes have been charged with seditious conspiracy, a rarely used charge that accuses them of attempting to overthrow the US government. Quested on Sunday said he has not spoken with Tarrio in person since February.
The documentary filmmaker said he still plans to complete his film, which will detail polarization and divisiveness in America and will “parallel” the committee’s investigation.
Quested, who comes from England but now lives in the US, said he and his crew had to take some time to process what they recorded on Jan. 6.
“I’m used to covering conflicts abroad and I can process that and I can separate that from my life. But to see it from the country I live in was particularly problematic,” he said on NBC. “I think America has become so divided, I don’t know if there is commonality anymore.”