Johnston’s alleged involvement in the event came to light publicly last March after the FBI released photos of individuals who “took part in the violence” at the U.S. Capitol. Johnston’s pics are available online as suspect #247–AFO (Assault on Federal Officer):
While Johnston has not publicly confirmed his attendance nor has he been arrested, numerous colleagues have identified him as a participant in the riot. Cassandra Church, who worked with Johnston on Harmontown, wrote on Twitter, “I’m no detective, but I do know Jay. He said he was there. And that’s him in the picture. So…” Another Harmontown colleague, Spencer Crittenden, stated in a now-deleted tweet that Johnston is “also a craven Trump supporter and was there at the time.” Tim & Eric’s Tim Heidecker also “fully confirmed through reliable sources” that Johnston was present at the riot.
Fox Corporation declined to comment to The Daily Beast about Johnston’s ban, responding, “Thanks for reaching out, FOX has no comment.”
The Walt Disney Company, which owns Bob’s Burgers, also refused to comment on the matter, telling The Daily Beast, “We will not be providing a comment.”
Bob’s Burgers is co-produced, aired by, and animated by subsidiaries of Fox Corporation, which also owns Fox News Channel, a primary source of right-wing disinformation.
Johnston has not appeared in the current season 12 of Bob’s Burgers. His other voice acting credits in animated series include Rick and Morty, Mary Shelley’s Frankenhole, and Moral Orel, the latter of which he also directed and produced. His onscreen credits include Better Call Saul, Arrested Development, The Sarah Silverman Program, and Mr. Show with Bob and David.
Actor Jay Johnston, a regular castmember on Bob’s Burgers who portrays Bob’s business rival Jimmy Pesto, has reportedly been “banned” from the series following his alleged participation in the January 6 Capitol Riot in Washington DC.
The #FBI is still seeking information on people who took part in the violence at the U.S. Capitol on January 6. If you know this individual, visit https://t.co/iL7sD5efWD. Refer to photo 247 in your tip. pic.twitter.com/CetMHzU190
— FBI (@FBI) March 4, 2021
Fox Corporation has continued to produce fabricated claims and conspiracy theories about the riots, including a recent three-part film called Patriot Purge that suggests January 6 was a “false flag” operation by the U.S. government to hurt conservatives. Two right-wing Fox News contributors, Stephen Hayes and Jonah Goldberg, quit the network in the fallout from that series. Goldberg told NPR that Fox News “traffics in all manner of innuendo and conspiracy theories that I think legitimately could lead to violence.”
The Daily Beast broke the story about Johnston’s removal from the show, citing two unnamed people familiar with the matter. According to the site’s report, the ban came from “top staff” on the series, however they’re trying to keep his removal quiet and not make “a big deal” about his absence.