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Thousands of rioters swarmed the United State Capitol building on January 6, and America watched in horror. The masses crashed through windows and doors, and they climbed the stairs forcing legislators and law enforcement to run for their lives. The horde of protesters that day left authorities with the challenging task of identifying and charging those responsible. Attorney General Merrick Garland and FBI Director Wray discussed the status of this endeavor late last week, according to CBS News, on June 24, 2021.
On Thursday, Garland disclosed that 500 individuals from 43 states connected with the insurrection had been arrested so far. The day before, Wray stated the FBI has hundreds of more investigations in connection with the attack. He indicated more serious charges were coming. ‘This is far from over,” Wray added.
A March court filing revealed prosecutors referred to the case as “unprecedented” in its scale. The insurrection “is likely the most complex investigation ever prosecuted by the Department of Justice.”
Of the 500 charged in the insurrection, 473 of their cases have been unsealed. CBS News analyzed those court documents found at least 190 were also indicted by grand juries.
As of June 24, eight of the insurrection defendants plead guilty, including two Oath Keepers. Both agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. One of them, Graydon Young, 54 of Florida, agreed to testify against 16 others in a conspiracy case as part of his plea agreement — conspiracy and obstruction of an official proceeding in connection with the Capitol riot. Young faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Five insurrection defendants plead guilty to misdemeanor charges. One man, who took a selfie in the Senate Chamber, was charged with and pleaded guilty to obstructing an official proceeding.
Only one defendant has been sentenced. Anna Morgon-Lloyd, 49 of Indiana, took a plea agreement for a single misdemeanor for trespassing inside the Capitol. Morgan-Lloyd will pay a $500 fine to cover damages. Several factors led to the agreed-upon three years probation and 40 hours of community service.
The DOJ offered details about why her case did not warrant jail time, including:
- She did not use violence.
- She was only in the Capitol building hallway for 10 minutes.
- She immediately cooperated with the investigation.
- She does not have a criminal record.
- She expressed “strong regret over her actions on January 6.
However, Morgan-Lloyd’s case is not typical. Many of the defendants in the insurrection are facing stiffer sentences; for example, one man who spent 15 minutes inside the Senate chamber could spend 15-21 months in prison. The alleged insurrectionist who posed for photos with his feet propped on Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s desk was in possession of a taser and stole a piece of mail would be sentenced to almost six years or more.
Written by Cathy Milne-Ware
CBS News: 500 arrested so far in Capitol riot case, including 100 charged with assaulting federal officers; by Clare Hymes, Cassidy McDonald, and Elenor Watson
ABC7 News Chicago: Indiana woman, 49, avoids jail in 1st Capitol Hill insurrection sentence
Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Brett Davis’ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of Geoff Livingston’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License