Rep. Burchett requests U.S. Capitol Police drop charges against Gold Star father arrested during SOTU speech

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (March 15, 2024) – Today, U.S. Congressman Tim Burchett (TN-02) wrote a letter to U.S. Capitol Police Chief John Thomas Manger demanding the charges against Steve Nikoui be dropped. Nikoui was arrested during the State of the Union speech on March 7, 2024 when he stood in the gallery and yelled during the speech.

“It is a shame your department is still pursuing charges against Mr. Nikoui. I request all charges against Steve Nikoui be dropped immediately. This man has given up enough, it’s time to give him some grace.” Said Rep. Burchett in the letter.

Steve Nikoui’s son, Lance Cpl. Kareen Nikoui, was one of the 13 U.S. servicemembers killed in a suicide bombing at Abbey Gate during the botched Afghanistan withdrawal in 2021.

Steve Nikoui was escorted out of the gallery during the State of the Union speech and arrested by Capitol Hill Police. He was released from custody but has been charged with crowding, obstructing, or incommoding. He is due in court to face misdemeanor charges on March 28, 2024.

The full letter can be read here.

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