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US court imposes greater sentence for attack on Capitol Hill

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Member of a paramilitary group was the first person to receive a conviction after being tried for the invasion of the US Congress; other defendants made deals
Member of a paramilitary group was the first person to receive a conviction after being tried for the invasion of the US Congress; other defendants made deals| Photo: Tyler Merbler/Wikimedia Commons

A member of a paramilitary group was sentenced Monday to seven years in prison for the attack on the US Capitol, becoming the first person to receive a conviction after being tried for that incident.

A federal judge for the District of Columbia, where Washington, capital of the US is located, sentenced Guy Reffitt, a protester who carried a firearm during the January 6, 2021, attack and a member of the Three Percenters group.

The sentence, of seven years and three months, is the longest ever handed down to anyone involved in the incidents that day, when a crowd of protesters supporting then-President Donald Trump (2017-2021) stormed the seat of Congress to try to prevent ratification. of Joe Biden’s electoral victory.

Reffitt was convicted of obstructing congressional proceedings, breaking into the Capitol while carrying a gun, confronting police officers, illegally carrying weapons, and threatening his three teenage children if they reported him; crimes of which he pleaded not guilty.

Judge Dabney Friedrich decided, however, not to convict him of domestic terrorism, as requested by the prosecution and for which he could have been sentenced to 15 years in prison.

According to photos attached to a court document, Reffitt, a Texas native, attended the Capitol Hill attack wearing a bulletproof vest, handcuffs and a helmet with a built-in camera.

Until now, all those convicted of the January 6 attack on the Capitol of last year had struck deals with the prosecutor’s office, which is why they were spared from the trial.

Authorities have charged more than 750 people from different parts of the country with crimes such as sedition, assaulting police officers, destroying government property and entering a restricted-access building. More than 200 have pleaded guilty after reaching agreements with the prosecutor.

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