Timothy Hale-Cusanelli, a former Army reservist and US Capitol insurgent, said on January 6, 2021, he was “delighted” and felt like “a civil war” when he was sentenced to four years in prison on Thursday.
“This is a significant sentence,” District Judge Trevor McFadden said.
McFadden sentenced Hale-Cusanelli for his “sexist, racist and anti-Semitic comments” which the judge said partly motivated his actions that day.
Hale-Cusanelli, who was convicted in May of five charges, including felony obstruction of an official proceeding, told the judge she would “never see my face again.”
On January 6, Hale-Cusanelli added “without respecting my uniform”, asking the judge for mercy. He was also sentenced to three years of supervised release and ordered to pay $2,000 in restitution.
During the riot, the video shows Hale-Cusanelli yelling for the mob to “move on” before breaching the US Capitol itself, and later signaling more rioters to join him. Hale-Cusanelli also tried to get another incident away from a police officer who was arresting the individual.
“You absolutely knew what you and others were doing,” McFadden said Thursday, adding that Hale-Cusanelli lied in her trial testimony when she said she didn’t know Congress was in session at the Capitol, despite telling her roommate she was outside. Chambers during riots.
McFadden has repeatedly chastised Hale-Cusanelli for racist comments that “normalize violence”, pointing to a recent rise in anti-Semitic violence in the US.
In their sentencing memorandum, prosecutors argued that Hale-Cusanelli should receive 78 months in prison and that he wanted civil war and anti-Semitic conspiracies, saying Jews controlled Democrats, President Joe Biden and the entire government.
“It is well established in the record at this point that Hale-Cusanelli subscribes to the ideology of white supremacists and Nazi sympathizers who are fueling enthusiasm for another civil war and that was the basis for this Court’s pretrial determination that Hale-Cusanelli was a danger to the community,” wrote Kathryn Fifield. prosecutors
“What Hale-Cusanelli was doing on January 6 was not activism,” Fifield added. “It was a prelude to his civil war.”
During her trial, Hale-Cusanelli’s defense attorney, Jonathan Crisp, told the jury that her client was simply saying these things to “upset” others and “get attention.” Hale-Cusanelli testified that he was half-Jewish and not anti-Semitic.
In his sentencing memo, another of Hale-Cusanelli’s lawyers, Nicholas Smith, wrote that his client’s “growth was like something out of Oliver Twist” and that he was “effectively raised by career criminals” and drug dealers. Smith, in his filing, asked that Hale-Cusanelli be sentenced to 20 months in prison with time served.
Stephen Ayres, who testified at a public House select committee hearing, was sentenced Thursday to two years of probation and 100 hours of community service.
Ayres pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct in a restricted building in June and the government asked for two months in prison at the sentencing.
District Judge John Bates credited Ayres’ testimony in sentencing while deciding his sentence, saying Ayres “has shown genuine remorse and remorse, which includes testifying at the select committee on January 6.”
“I want to apologize to you and to the court and to the American people,” Ayres said at the sentencing hearing. “I went down that day not intending to cause violence or anything like that, but I got caught up with the internet, Facebook, everything that’s online, I felt like it was ultimately leading me in the wrong direction.”
At the July hearing, Ayres testified that he was “bored” by then-President Donald Trump’s speech and had never intended to go to the Capitol, but was “following what (Trump) said” during his Ellipse speech.
“It changed my life, not for the better, definitely not for the better,” she said. He added that he no longer believes Trump’s lies about the 2020 election, but warned that there are still millions of people who are threatening future elections.