Greater than 7 years in jail

  • Guy Reffitt and his teenage daughter, Peyton, spoke in court on Monday’s sentencing.
  • Prosecutors argued that Reffitt’s conduct should be treated as domestic terrorism.
  • The Justice Department asked Reffitt to receive a 15-year prison sentence.

Guy Reffitt, the first Capitol rioter to be found guilty at trial, was sentenced on Monday to more than seven years in prison – the longest term behind bars to date in a case stemming from the assault. The Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Judge Dabney Friedrich handed down the sentence five months after a jury found Reffitt on all five counts he faced after the siege of the Capitol, including obstructing an official due process and threatening his children. him to prevent them from reporting him to law enforcement. The verdict ended an unusually lengthy hearing that lasted nearly six hours, with prosecutors and Friedrich highlighting Reffitt’s apparent lack of consistency and statements in which he described himself as a “martyrs” and “patriots.”

“In a democracy the answer to those frustrations is not rebellion, and it’s really disturbing that he’s persistently persevering with views that fall outside the mainstream,” says Friedrich.

“What he and the others who attacked the Capitol on January 6 did is anti-patriotism,” she added. “The officers in the Capitol are patriots. … They are patriots. Those who stormed the Capitol are not. Not only are they not patriots, but they are a direct threat to the nation. our democracy and will be punished as such.”

Reffitt initially refused to speak to Friedrich, but he reversed course after his lunch break to express regret over his role in the January 6 violence.

“I think people deserve my apology,” Reffitt said. “Obviously I have a problem with just rambling and saying stupid things.”

Ahead of Monday’s sentencing hearing, prosecutors recommended that Reffitt receive a 15-year sentence, a prison sentence three times the longest ordered to date in more than 800 prosecutions related to the case. attack the Capitol. Two other Capitol rioters – Mark Ponder and Robert Palmer – had previously received more than five years in prison after pleading guilty to assaulting a police officer on January 6.

In the Reffitt case, prosecutors urged Friedrich to classify Reffitt’s conduct as domestic terrorism and adopt stricter sentencing guidelines. Prosecutors emphasized that Reffitt brought a police-style flexible gun and a firearm to the Capitol, where he “was not only seeking to stop Congress, but also to attack, remove, and displace houses of government.” Legislators are serving in Congress.

Prosecutor Jeffrey Nestler said: “He is planning to bypass our government. He’s not just trying to prevent certification.” “He didn’t finish. January 6 is just a preface.”

“Mr Reffitt,” he added, “all in a classroom alone.”

But Friedrich refused to adopt the enhanced counter-terrorism measure on Monday, saying it would cause “unwarranted sentencing disparities” with other cases involving attacks on police and intimidation. threats of violence on January 6.

At him test In March, prosecutors showed video footage of Reffitt wearing tactical gear as he walked up the stairs outside the Capitol, with a crowd of Trump supporters following him. Prosecutors described Reffitt, a one-time member of the far-right Three Percenters, as “the spearhead of this mob” and painted him as a key leader on the ground who “ignited” the fire. 6/1.

“Mr Reffitt is intent on violently overthrowing Congress and pulling members of Congress out of the Capitol,” Nestler said Monday.

Reffitt’s trial featured dramatic testimony from his teenage son, Jackson Reffitt, who recounted reporting his father to law enforcement on Christmas Eve 2020 after growing increasingly nervous about excessive rhetoric and plans to do “something big”. Jackson Reffitt also testified that he secretly recorded his father after January 6 as he excitedly recounted his confrontation with police on the stairs leading to the Capitol.

But Guy Reffitt grew increasingly distressed as federal agents began tracking down and arresting those accused of taking part in the January 6 attacks, his son told the court. In a key piece of testimony, Jackson Reffitt details a conversation in which his father told him and his sister that they would be traitors if they turned him over to law enforcement – and that ” traitors will be shot.”

On Monday, prosecutor Risa Berkower read aloud a letter from Jackson Reffitt in court in which he expressed hope that his father would be able to “use all the safety nets” available in the system. federal prison, including mental health care. Prison, he writes, should not be used to “destroy a person but to restore someone.”

Reffitt’s teenage daughter Peyton Reffitt later told Friedrich that her father’s mental health was “always a matter of fact.” In emotional statements, she appeared to blame the January 6 violence on former President Donald Trump.

“My father’s name wasn’t on the flag everyone was carrying that day,” she said. “It’s another man’s name.”

Referring to her father, Peyton Reffitt said: “He’s not a leader.”

At his sentencing Monday, Friedrich described Reffitt as a “talented, intelligent man with great dedication to his family and country.”

“And, yes, your family has suffered emotionally and financially because of the bad choices you’ve made. But you still have a chance to make them proud and make your country proud. proud,” Friedrich told Reffitt, who appeared in court Monday wearing eyeglasses, a white mask and an orange jumpsuit.

“You can talk to people whose views you’ve held – I hope in the past – in a way that others can’t,” she added. “And you can really play a role, you can be a real leader – not the kind of leader you demonstrated or tried to show on January 6, but a leader. real leadership in trying to turn the tide and be part of the solution in this county.”

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