A retired New York police officer faces 10 years in prison for his involvement in broken into From the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Thomas Webster, 56, is charged with an “attack on democracy.” He was blamed for his previous work as a law enforcement officer. It is the highest ruling ever issued by a judge in the case of the storming of the Capitol last year.
Webster grabbed a metal flagpole outside the Capitol and waved it around. As a result, the attackers managed to break through the police barrier. Then he carried an officer to the ground. Other attackers kicked the officer, who sustained several injuries.
Stephen Dantono, the assistant director of the FBI trying to bring to justice all those involved in the Capitol Storm, says Webster “betrayed fellow law enforcement officers who risked their lives to protect the American people.”
In addition to being a former police officer, Webster has also served in the Marines in the past. “He took an oath before these professions in which he promised to defend the constitution against all hostilities at home and abroad,” Dantono said.
None of the 250 or so people convicted for their role in the storming of the Capitol received a punishment as severe as Webster. Prosecutors demanded a 17-year prison sentence, but Judge Amit Mehta on Thursday sentenced him to 10 years in prison.
Judge Mehta writes that before sentencing, he looked at photos taken during Webster’s storming several times Washington Post. “It wasn’t until after your work that hell broke out, and thanks to your efforts people were able to get to the Capitol,” says Mehta. “Your part was big and that context matters.”
The fact that he was prepared for the attack and was wearing bulletproof clothing also meant that Webster was given a heavy sentence.
Lawyers for the retired officer said he acted “out of self-defense.” They said former President Donald Trump would have had a “very big impact” on him.
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