Federal prosecutors are recommending an eight-year jail sentence for an off-responsibility Virginia law enforcement officer who was convicted by a jury of storming the U.S. Capitol to impede Congress from certifying President Joe Biden’s 2020 electoral victory.
Former Rocky Mount Police Sgt. Thomas Robertson utilised his regulation enforcement training to block police officers who have been striving to secure the Capitol from a mob’s attack on Jan. 6, 2021, prosecutors claimed in a court filing Thursday supporting their sentencing advice.
“Instead of making use of his training and electrical power to market the community very good, he attempted to overthrow the federal government,” they wrote.
An eight-year prison sentence would be the longest amongst hundreds of Capitol riot scenarios. The lengthiest so far is 7 years and a few months for Person Reffitt, a Texas man who attacked the Capitol though armed with a holstered handgun.
U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper is scheduled to sentence Robertson following Thursday. Prosecutors also questioned the judge to sentence Robertson to 3 decades of supervised launch after any prison term.
Robertson’s attorney, Mark Rollins, is in search of a sentence underneath a sentencing suggestions assortment of 27 to 33 months of imprisonment. Prosecutors estimate a sentencing recommendations assortment of 87 months to 108 months, but Cooper is not sure by any of all those estimates or suggestions.
Robertson did not testify at his demo prior to a jury convicted him in April of all 6 counts in his indictment, which include rates that he interfered with police officers at the Capitol and that he entered a restricted space with a risky weapon, a big wooden adhere.
Robertson’s lawyers reported the U.S. Military veteran was using the stick to enable him stroll since he has a limp from finding shot in the appropriate thigh even though doing the job as a non-public contractor for the U.S. Defense Department in Afghanistan in 2011.
In their sentencing memo, prosecutors accused Robertson of lying about his army service. Robertson identified himself on his resume as a U.S. Military Ranger university graduate, but his formal armed service data you should not guidance that assert, prosecutors stated. They reported Robertson also lied to a reporter about acquiring a Purple Coronary heart.
Robertson’s jury trial was the next for a Capitol riot situation. Reffitt’s was the to start with. Jurors have unanimously convicted 7 riot defendants of all prices in their respective indictments.
Robertson traveled to Washington, D.C., on the early morning of Jan. 6 with co-worker Jacob Fracker and a third man, a neighbor. Fracker also was an off-duty Rocky Mount police officer. He was scheduled to be attempted together with Robertson ahead of he pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge and agreed to cooperate with authorities.
Fracker testified at Robertson’s trial that he at first thought that he was basically trespassing when he entered the Capitol creating. But he eventually pleaded guilty to conspiring with Robertson to hinder Congress.
Robertson’s legal professionals conceded that he broke the legislation when he entered the Capitol during the riot. They inspired jurors to convict Robertson of misdemeanor offenses but acquit him of felony fees.
Jurors saw some of Robertson’s posts on social media before and just after the Capitol riot. In a Fb post on Nov. 7, 2020, Robertson stated “being disenfranchised by fraud is my tricky line.”
“I’ve used most of my adult daily life preventing a counter insurgency. (I’m) about to develop into portion of a single, and a quite helpful just one,” he wrote.
In a letter tackled to the judge, Robertson mentioned he requires complete duty for his steps on Jan. 6 and “any inadequate choices I produced.” He blamed the vitriolic information of his social media posts on a blend of strain, alcohol abuse and “submersion in deep ‘rabbit holes’ of election conspiracy idea.”
“I sat close to at night consuming as well much and reacting to content and internet sites provided to me by Fb” algorithms, he wrote.
The town fired Robertson and Fracker just after the riot. Rocky Mount is about 25 miles (40 kilometers) south of Roanoke and has about 5,000 citizens.
Robertson has been jailed since Cooper ruled past 12 months that he violated the terms of his pretrial launch by possessing firearms.
Roughly 850 people today have been charged with federal crimes for their perform on Jan. 6. More than 350 of them have pleaded responsible, primarily to misdemeanor offenses, and about 220 have been sentenced so considerably.
The Fort News