Capitol Breach Pardoning Rioters

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS In this Wednesday, Jan. 6, file photo, supporters of President Donald Trump climb the west wall of the the U.S. Capitol in Washington.

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A Maryland man accused of attacking police with a metal baseball bat in the Jan. 6 storming of the U.S. Capitol was jailed pending trial Friday as judges weighed holding others charged with committing violent assaults or other crimes wielding Tasers, batons, crow bars and hockey sticks.

Prosecutors say Emanuel Jackson, 20, was captured on video punching a Capitol Police officer guarding a Senate wing entrance at 2:48 p.m., helping the leading edge of a mob overrun police and stampede into the building to try to halt the electoral vote certification of then-president-elect Joe Biden’s victory.

Two hours later, Jackson was recorded helping other violent rioters enter through the West Terrace by beating other officers with a baseball bat, prosecutors said.

“The defendant’s actions were incredibly dangerous, disabled law enforcement officers and enabled scores to enter the Capitol,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony Scarpelli argued in a hearing in Washington.

Jackson was “a spoke in the wheel” of a historic attack on Congress, Scarpelli said, claiming that the danger Jackson caused by helping the “violent mob cannot be understated.”

U.S. Magistrate G. Michael Harvey agreed. Consequences could have been far worse but for the “quick-thinking and heroic acts of those inside as well as I imagine a great deal of luck,” he said.

Whatever passions inspired the riot “are still running high,” Harvey said, adding, “I have no confidence that whatever drove the defendant to do what he is alleged to have done — whether they be the statements of the president [Donald Trump], mental issues he appears to suffer from or a . . . lapse of judgment” can be addressed short of detention.

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Jackson’s youth, lack of any criminal history and “severely challenged” mental health factored into his ruling, Harvey said. Defense attorney Brandi Harden added that Jackson was recently homeless, living in a transition housing program and turned himself in. Harvey agreed to request that Jackson be held at a correction treatment facility in a program for younger offenders.

Separately on Thursday, federal authorities also arrested a Michigan man, Michael Joseph Foy, accusing him of striking a downed police officer several times with a hockey stick and beating other D.C. police officers who had been knocked down and dragged into a crowd of rioters.

An FBI charging affidavit cited videos of the event and alleged the attack continued for about 16 seconds until Foy was knocked down by another rioter. The FBI said it identified Foy from the videos and postings on his father’s Facebook page.

An attorney for Foy could not immediately be identified.

Earlier, Chief Judge Beryl Howell of Washington had intervened to have two defendants charged in the riot transported to Washington for further deliberations after federal magistrates had initially granted their conditional release. The cases include Robert Barnett, 60, an Arkansas man accused of entering House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office with a Taser, where he was photographed with his boot on an office desk; and Gina Michelle Bisignano, 54, of Beverly Hills, who is accused of inciting rioters, aiding and abetting the destruction of property interference with law enforcement and who authorities said was found in possession at her home of an unregistered firearm.

Prosecutors argued that charges involving crimes of violence and felonies involving a dangerous weapon meet requirements for detention pending trial.


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