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How Did a Red Scarf From Sweden End Up at Capitol Riot?

Person of interest wore one of 934 scarves mailed from Skellefteå in 2017
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 15, 2021 7:20 AM CST

(Newser) – Swedes are hoping to identify a person of interest in the Capitol riot, seen wearing a scarf specific to the city of Skellefteå. A resident of the city of 72,000 first noticed the red scarf amid debris on the floor of the Capitol. Further digging by Sweden's Dagens Nyheter newspaper found images of it on the neck of a bearded man. The scarf had been gifted to former city residents in 2017 as part of an annual tradition. As the Local reports, it was one of just 934 scarves sent out. Swedes have had no luck in identifying the man so far, however. The city says it sent only one scarf to the US in 2017, and it went to a woman. That woman, who claims she actually received socks, says she isn't familiar with the man.

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Police have labeled him a "person of interest in unrest-related offenses." One photo shows him wearing a baseball hat near police barricades, being held back by two others. "After breaking through the barriers, the scarf man was later seen toward the front of the mob, waiving [sic] an American flag, and no longer wearing his baseball hat ... but an official police helmet and visor," Christian Christensen, an American professor of journalism at Stockholm University, explains in a Twitter thread. He adds that Dagens Nyheter has identified the man as part of a group that beat up a police officer. The man was also recorded among a group discussing the Capitol's floor plan, though he'd lost the scarf by then. (Read more U.S. Capitol stories.)

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