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Court Sends A Message: Paul Allard Hodgkins Sentenced To 8 Months In Prison For Entering Capitol On January 6, 2021

Court Sends A Message: Paul Allard Hodgkins Sentenced To 8 Months In Prison For Entering Capitol On January 6, 2021

Did not engage in violence or property damage. Defense: “a man who for just one hour on one day, lost his bearings and his way. It is the story of a man who made a fateful decision to follow the crowd, and found himself for approximately 15 minutes in a place that he sincerely regrets to have been.”

The first prison sentence has been handed down in a prosecution arising out of the Jan. 6 melee at the Capitol, and it’s steep.

In June, Paul Allard Hodgkins pled guilty to one felony count of entering the Capitol to obstruct Congress.  Today he was sentenced to eight months behind bars.

To date, only one other person has been sentenced for the activities that occurred on Jan. 6.  Anna Morgan-Lloyd, a 49 year-old grandmother from Indiana, was sentenced in late June to three years of probation and ordered to pay $500 in restitution after pleading guilty to one charge of misdemeanor disorderly conduct.

Hodgkins is the first person convicted of a felony to be sentenced.

A 38 years-old former Eagle Scout who lives in the Tampa Bay area, Hodgkins was a blue collar worker with a steady nine-to-five over the last seven years.

On Jan. 6, he traveled alone by bus from Florida to Washington, D.C. to attend the Stop the Steal rally.  After the rally, he made his way to the Capitol building with the crowd, and, following others, walked into the Capitol an hour after the Congress had recessed.

Hodgins, said his lawyer in his sentencing memorandum to the court,

“had an absolutely miniscule … role in [the events of Jan. 6].  Mr. Hodgkins was not involved in any way, shape or form, with violence toward anyone in law enforcement. Mr. Hodgkins was not involved in any way, shape or form with any property damage done to the Capitol. Mr. Hodgkins never touched a single item within the Capitol building itself. His sole participation simply included walking into the building, onto the floor of the United States Senate, and leaving the same building, all within a 15-minute period of time.

According the government’s sentencing memorandum, Hodgkins entered the Senate Chamber holding a Trump 2020 flag, took a selfie, and prayed with “other rioters” who were congregated there before exiting the Senate Chamber and the U.S. Capitol.

Hodgkins was arrested on February 16, 2021, but unlike many others who were present at the Capitol on Jan. 6 who remain remanded in solitary confinement,  Hodgkins was allowed to remain at liberty throughout his criminal prosecution. (I previously wrote about one of the less fortunate arrestees –Timothy Hale-Cusanelli – at Legal Insurrection here.)

He was thereafter indicted in March on five criminal counts.  Just one of those was a felony – Obstruction of an Official Proceeding and Aiding and Abetting under 18 USC 1512(c)(2).  The rest were misdemeanors sounding in trespass and disorderly conduct.

For the last five months, Hodgkins was effectively on house arrest – he wore an ankle monitor and adhered to a curfew.  According to the probation officer who had been monitoring Hodgkins throughout the criminal case, he was fully compliant while on release.

In June, he pled guilty.  And it’s not hard to see why – he simply lacked the resources to put up a fight.

In his sentencing memorandum, Hodgkins’ lawyer described his client as someone who is “not wealthy in any way, shape or form.” Hodgkins, said his lawyer, “rents a home in what is considered the poorest, working class neighborhood in Tampa,” and “works over 40 hours a week, lives pay check to pay check, barely getting by financially.”

Despite the fact that Hodgkins had no prior criminal record and was entirely cooperative with law enforcement, federal prosecutors recommended a sentence of 18 months’ incarceration (the federal sentencing guidelines called for a recommended range of between 15 to 21 months.)

The first reason given by the government to justify their sentencing recommendation was that Hodgkins carried rope, eye goggles, and latex rubber gloves in his backpack on the day of the melee, and that this meant that he acted with premeditation and was “prepared for violence from the outset.”

Although Hodgkins explained that these items were part of a First Aid kit, the government responded that even if that were so, such a kit meant that Hodgkins anticipated the possibility of being involved in a violent conflict in D.C.

The government next asserted that such its proposed sentence was “necessary to promote respect for the law” because “[t]he violence and destruction of property at the U.S. Capitol on January 6 showed a blatant and appalling disregard for our institutions of government and the orderly administration of the democratic process.”

Finally, the government contended that a significant jail sentence was essential “to deter others” from engaging in “domestic terrorism,” which it said “the breach of the Capitol certainly was.”  On this point, the government stated that “terrorists, even those with no prior criminal behavior, are unique among criminals in the likelihood of recidivism, the difficulty of rehabilitation, and the need for incapacitation.”

There has been an alarming trend among the federal law enforcement and national security apparatuses of labeling those who don’t subscribe to liberal orthodoxy as domestic terrorists, white supremacists and violent extremists.  This has been easy to do since there is no domestic terrorism statute, and therefore no uniform definition of what the term means.

The FBI’s website defines “domestic terrorism” as “[v]iolent, criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups to further ideological goals stemming from domestic influences, such as those of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature.”  While the violent and destructive conduct of Antifa and Black Lives Matter in Portland, Seattle, Minneapolis, and other cities throughout the country over the last year fit the bill, the phrase “domestic terrorism” is just not used in reference to these groups or their campaigns of intimidation, destruction and violence.

Instead, the absence of a settled definition for domestic terrorism has allowed the phrase to be flexibly applied against anyone who the entrenched DOJ bureaucrats wish to target.  And to date, it has been used almost exclusively against those on the ideological right.

That certainly was the case with Mr. Hodgkins.

What was so troubling about the government’s sentencing arguments in this case was that all of their reasons for incarceration turned on actions undertaken by individuals other than the actual criminal defendant.   Indeed, at no time on Jan. 6 did Hodgkins ever engage in any violence or property destruction.  He trespassed, yes, but beyond that he simply carried a flag, took a selfie and prayed.

The government’s message was clear – those on the ideological right are fungible, and we can punish one for the sins of the others.

That type of kin punishment – a hallmark of authoritarian regimes from the Nazis to North Korea – might be how the criminal law works in Third World Banana Republics and under Sharia Law, but not in America, right?

Hodgkins’ attorney argued with passion that sentencing is not a blunderbuss activity, but an intensely personal one – indeed, federal law requires that, before imposing sentence, courts scrutinize the unique characteristics and history of the individual defendant as well as the specific circumstances of the charged offense.

He exhorted that a prison sentence was unnecessary to take the proverbial pound of flesh from his client:

“Because [Hodgkins]  is now a convicted felon for the entirety of his life, he loses his right to bear arms, his right to vote in the State of Florida, will have to register as a convicted felon wherever he lives, [and] will lose the ability to rent a residence at most locations who do background checks.”

Hodgkins’ “15-minutes of bad judgment,” said his lawyer, would serve to “cancel” him, and his felony conviction would brand him with a “scarlet letter” that he would have to wear “for the rest of his life.”

Further, argued Hodgkins’ attorney, a prison sentence “would take a productive taxpaying member of the Tampa Bay community, and turn him into a ward of the State. [Hodgkins] would go from being fully and gainfully employed as a working-class Tampa resident, to unemployed and homeless.”

Despite the force of these arguments, they ran into an unsurmountable headwind:  The court wanted to send a political message.

Hodgkins was not sentenced for the crimes he committed, but for those perpetrated by others – and above all else, for the mortal sin of supporting Donald Trump.

In his sentencing memo, Hodgkins’ lawyer wrote poetically that the story of his client was one of

“a man who for just one hour on one day, lost his bearings and his way. It is the story of a man who made a fateful decision to follow the crowd, and found himself for approximately 15 minutes in a place that he sincerely regrets to have been. It is the story of a man who is worthy of this Court’s mercy and grace. Paul is an avatar of us all, and how this Court deals with his misconduct will say much about where we are and what we will become as a nation.”

Today, the court is the one that lost its way.  And how it dealt with Paul Hodgkins says a lot about where we are today as a nation.

———————-

Ameer Benno is an appellate and constitutional law attorney. He was the Republican candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2018 in New York’s Fourth Congressional District, and he frequently appears on national television and radio to give legal and political commentary. Follow him on Twitter at @AmeerBenno.

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Comments

He has got to be an actor, in which case I am happy that he’s being jailed.

Trump supporters do not wave RED Trump flags. Seems like these were made just for this event.

    Danny in reply to alohahola. | July 19, 2021 at 9:08 pm

    Either that or he walked into the wrong place at the wrong time.

    Evidence be damned. Just like a Leftist.

      CommoChief in reply to SDN. | July 20, 2021 at 10:43 am

      SDN,

      The man pled guilty to the charge. Did he plead because the entire apparatus of the DoJ was arrayed against him and he didn’t have sufficient resources to mount an effective defense? Very likely.

      IMO, the take away from this is don’t plead guilty. As I understand it this is the second sentence and both were as a result of a plea. The DoJ hasn’t been overly successful in convicting at trial.

      There are different subsets of folks here. Some went into the chambers. Some entered the building but not the chambers. Some only entered the grounds.

      Of those groups there are additional subsets. Some forced entry/B&E. Some went in right behind that group. Some opened outer doors. Some went through the opened doors. Some walked past security who removed barricades.

      Those groups have subsets. Some did nothing else. Some took photos. Some did minor damage. Some took souvenirs.

      In this particular case the man plead to the charge and received a sentence of 8 months, less than half what the prosecutor wanted and less than the guidelines.

      Arguments about guilt or innocence ended when the man plead guilty regardless of why he chose to do so.

      As we see more sentences following guilty verdicts or pleas we can evaluate whether his sentence in relation to the others from Jan 6 was too harsh. Assuming of course that the DoJ can actually make their case without reliance upon a plea.

        james h in reply to CommoChief. | July 20, 2021 at 12:04 pm

        If he plead not guilty, he would likely be sentenced to 10+ years for all the alleged crimes they tacked on but removed for the plea agreement.

          CommoChief in reply to james h. | July 20, 2021 at 1:01 pm

          James,

          Maybe, maybe not. At a minimum the govt would have to prove it’s case at trial.

          The man pled guilty. Once that happens he has removed the requirement for the govt to prove their case. The reason he pled doesn’t change or eliminate that.

          If we want the tens of thousands of people who illegally voted in GA by failing to update their voter registration after moving counties more than 30 days prior to the election to be prosecuted, and I certainly do, then accepting guilty pleas is going to be necessary. Simple logistics dictates that.

        Rabel in reply to CommoChief. | July 20, 2021 at 7:38 pm

        “As we see more sentences following guilty verdicts or pleas we can evaluate whether his sentence in relation to the others from Jan 6 was too harsh.”

        The proper evaluation is whether his sentence is too harsh in relation to the sentences of political protesters other than those of Jan. 6.

          CommoChief in reply to Rabel. | July 21, 2021 at 10:16 am

          know that’s what everyone else seems to be expressing and I don’t disagree. The first step evaluation is within the Jan 6 group. The next step is between the Jan 6 group and other groups.

          The feds are creating a standard here with the Jan 6 group. There are people in that group who didn’t do anything more than the Congresswoman who staged a protest and was arrested last week.

          She was kicked loose with $50. Simply because her protest had less attendance doesn’t make it less a crime.

          IMO, when people loose faith that the system is at least trying to preserve the pretense of blind justice then they just might withdraw their consent for the system. Very dangerous.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to alohahola. | July 20, 2021 at 1:51 am

    “showed a blatant and appalling disregard for our institutions of government and the orderly administration of the democratic process.”

    This sounds like Biden-Harris, a crime syndicate, criminals who have no respect for law, and who abuse law to persecute Trump supporters.

An offer [of crown management] denied. An invitation [by capitol police] extended. A rug pulled from underfoot. An unarmed woman, surrounded, murdered for trespassing. A demos-cracy aborted at the Twilight fringe. One step forward, two steps backward.

I suppose the question of proportionality will be deferred until we see the sentences of other participants and the charges proven or pled.

Is eight months too much for someone who admitted not just trespassing on Capital grounds but importantly entering the Senate Chamber which did in fact obstruct an official proceeding?

I don’t dismiss Prof Jacobson’s arguments about the govt tactics here. I think that’s very likely true. I just don’t have a basis to evaluate whether this is out of line with other protesters yet. Once we have a larger sample size we can make a better judgment.

    rabid wombat in reply to CommoChief. | July 19, 2021 at 9:08 pm

    “I just don’t have a basis to evaluate whether this is out of line with other protesters yet. Once we have a larger sample size we can make a better judgment.”

    A point well made “ What about all the “rioters” at Kavanaughs hearing?”

    Or the sentences for trying to burn down occupied federal courthouses….

    If you are going to compare, view the problem in total!

      rabid wombat in reply to rabid wombat. | July 19, 2021 at 10:08 pm

      Another point for reference: “Two New York City Ivy League lawyers will stand trial in March 2022 for allegedly firebombing a police cruiser and distributing Molotov cocktails during the George Floyd riots last summer.”

      https://freebeacon.com/latest-news/ivy-league-lawyers-head-to-trial-for-firebombing-cop-car/

      Dr.Dave in reply to rabid wombat. | July 19, 2021 at 10:40 pm

      Did he obstruct a legal proceedings.? I’m pretty sure the proceeding has ceased due to a pipe bomb threat.

      CommoChief in reply to rabid wombat. | July 20, 2021 at 8:49 am

      Ok.fair enough.

      We don’t have a large enough sample size among the Jan 6 participants to determine if this particular sentence is disproportionate among that subset of rioters.

      The rest of the events you reference don’t seem to be a priority for prosecution by DoJ, under Biden or under the DJT administration. Since the DoJ is the constant, the problem is the attitude and philosophy of the DoJ.

      I would love to see an even handed system of Justice. We don’t seem to have one.

    Milhouse in reply to CommoChief. | July 20, 2021 at 1:44 am

    entering the Senate Chamber which did in fact obstruct an official proceeding?

    No, it didn’t.

    After the rally, he made his way to the Capitol building with the crowd, and, following others, walked into the Capitol an hour after the Congress had recessed.

    So he didn’t obstruct anything.

      Milhouse in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 2:02 am

      Also, why is obstructing congress’s business any worse than obstructing that of any department store, or any other productive enterprise, as so many people have done over the last four years with complete impunity? Why is it worse than obstructing traffic on a public highway, and thus preventing hundreds of people from going about their daily business? As far as I can see any productive enterprise is more important than what Congress does. Congressmen are the people’s servants; businessmen, shoppers, workers, etc. are the people. Making laws is necessary, but no more so than making what goes down the toilet. We couldn’t survive without either, but neither should be elevated above actual production, or above people living their lives.

        mark311 in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 5:38 am

        @milhouse

        “Also, why is obstructing congress’s business any worse than obstructing that of any department store”

        because its an important legal and governmental function

        “Congressmen are the people’s servants; businessmen, shoppers, workers, etc. are the people.”

        That’s a silly argument, congress people represent the people and therefore by disrupting them from carrying out the function they are expected to take that’s an explicit attack on those that they represent.

        With regard to obstruction of course he did. The whole reason congress was recessed was because of the breach of the barriers by a large mob of people. The crime he has been convicted of is indicative of the role he played in the whole sorry affair.

        Capsaicin_Addict in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 7:59 am

        Considering the track record of Congress these days, obstructing it should be lauded, not condemned.

        CommoChief in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 8:38 am

        He pled guilty to that charge.

        Antifundamentalist in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 9:02 am

        Because some pigs are more equal than others.

        Brave Sir Robbin in reply to Milhouse. | July 21, 2021 at 6:09 pm

        “Also, why is obstructing congress’s business any worse than obstructing that of any department store, or any other productive enterprise,”

        I assume by use of the term “other productive enterprise,” you are referring to the department store and not congress.

        Just asking for a point of clarification.

      randian in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 4:56 am

      He must be getting bad legal advice. Public defender? Some have suggested that DC’s public defenders are, shall we say, ideologically aligned with those who want to railroad these defendants. If he didn’t obstruct anything, that should be an easy charge to get thrown out. It would be like being hit with a murder charge and being told by your lawyer not to demand the DA at least prove somebody is dead.

        mark311 in reply to randian. | July 20, 2021 at 5:40 am

        Problematic argument. Why did the proceedings get delayed, because of a crowd of Trump supporters entering the building. Was he part of that crowd yes. What exactly should his lawyer have argued that the crowd (and by implication him) didn’t disrupt the proceedings?

        Awing1 in reply to randian. | July 20, 2021 at 9:53 am

        His lawyer, Patrick Leduc, is not a public defender. But he knows the law well enough to understand that people unlawfully entering and remaining in the Senate chamber and ruffling through Senate papers creating and prolonging a security situation when they know the Senate is in session certifying the votes of the electoral college is a pretty slam dunk case of obstruction.

          gonzotx in reply to Awing1. | July 20, 2021 at 10:18 am

          Only if your on the other side. How many times have we seen these lunatic women in pink hats storming the halls of Congress

          TONS

          And nothing, absolutely nothing, in fact they are held at a high standard

          Awing1 in reply to Awing1. | July 20, 2021 at 11:25 am

          gonzotx: I have never seen groups of them unlawfully entering the capitol and then persisting in the well of the Senate to prevent it from conducting business, much less causing an evacuation of the Senate and House. If you’ve got evidence of that, provide it. If you’re talking about people lawfully present then being disruptive during committee hearings, they’re regularly arrested and prosecuted, but the charges are commensurate with the fact that they typically don’t unlawfully enter.

        Brave Sir Robbin in reply to randian. | July 21, 2021 at 6:23 pm

        “He must be getting bad legal advice.”

        I normally strongly advise that people do whatever is necessary to avoid going trial to be prosecuted by a state that has, comparatively, unlimited resources, and judgement by 12 people not smart enough to avoid jury duty and referee employed by the same people who employ the prosecutor..

        However, in this case, when faced by a hostile prosecutor looking for notches on his bat of justice, 12 hostile people who want to be on a jury to see you lynched in a public square, and a referee that is there make sure you get yours good and hard after several months of solitary confinement and a prospect for a decade more…. I change my mind on the matter. Now I insist they must all become martyrs for the cause!

        As our esteemed president, Ol’ honest Joe would say, “C’mon man!”

        8 months is an overly harsh sentence for this man by far. Probation was the appropriate call. But it was the best deal he was going to get. Absolute fact.

      Awing1 in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 9:49 am

      He walked into the Capitol an hour after the Joint Session had temporarily adjourned to their separate chambers to address the certification objections, but addressing those was part of the proceedings, and each House was still in session. They then evacuated about 30 minutes before he entered the Capitol, and they remained evacuated and unable to resume their proceedings because he and others were unlawfully present, taking pictures in the Senate well, ruffling through Senate papers, ect.

Noted.

What about all the “rioters” at Kavanaughs hearing?

Am I missing something?

Where’s Trump

He made a clarion call amd they came, the least he could do is get them good representation instead of public defenders

Very disappointed in him

    scooterjay in reply to gonzotx. | July 19, 2021 at 9:24 pm

    Ummm, silenced?

    JHogan in reply to gonzotx. | July 19, 2021 at 10:24 pm

    What about all the “rioters” at Kavanaughs hearing?

    Am I missing something?

    Yes, you are. They were Democrats doing The Party’s bidding.

    It’s okay for Dems to forcefully occupy federal buildings in DC and disrupt the operation of the government. The Dem-corporate media complex cheers them on. Especially when a Republican is POTUS.

    They call it ‘The Resistance’. And whatever they do is okay because they are protesting and combatting pure evil, or something.

    Welcome to Comrade Biden’s Amerika.

    Milhouse in reply to gonzotx. | July 20, 2021 at 1:53 am

    He didn’t tell them to break in to the Capitol. He told them to march on it, which is a completely normal and accepted practice.

    Still, it would have been nice if he’d done for them as Kamala Harris did for the BLM rioters.

Okay, fine…now round up the AntiFa leaders that occupied the buildings and the BLM leaders that caused actual violence.

Subotai Bahadur | July 19, 2021 at 9:52 pm

Lesson to be learned. The Congress of the United States, and the Capitol Building are hostile to Americans. They are TWANLOC, and consider us the enemy. Noted.

Subotai Bahadur

When the American people decide it’s time to send their own message, a number of the people involved in this tyranny will be sorely dismayed.

I’ll not be taking any trips to DC for the foreseeable future. I no longer consider it a safe place for an ordinary flyover country Trump supporting American. Never know when the American Stasi might conclude I could be a dangerous domestic terrorist.

DC is essentially an occupied city controlled by a regime that staged a 4 year long coup.

This is Comrade Biden’s Amerika.

I wonder what happened to all those Antifa/BLM rioters who were trying every night for several weeks to occupy and burn down a federal courthouse. While federal agents were in it. And who assaulted the federal agents protecting it every night for weeks.

Have at least 500 of them been arrested and held without bail pending the outcome of their trials?

Aren’t they violent ‘domestic terrorists’?

What country am I living in?

    JHogan in reply to dging. | July 19, 2021 at 10:28 pm

    Comrade Biden’s Amerika. Formerly known as The Land of the Free. Soon to be known as the United Soviet States of Amerika.

I’m at a loss to understand why this judge, and all the other arms of government in DC, don’t understand how this will be viewed by the population. Many people have already inferred that there is a two tiered justice system in the United States. The prosecution (in both its meanings) of ordinary Americans for, basically, supporting the wrong political party is indefensible. This is, in many ways, the American Cultural Revolution. I almost believe the leftnis hoping for civil war. They think many of us will be killed, and they’re happy about that.

    MarkS in reply to CincyJan. | July 20, 2021 at 7:28 am

    They do not care what the opinion of the unwashed may be. They had their collective feathers ruffled on 1/6 and the peons must be taught some manners

Too bad they pulled down the fences. It was nice that they kept the criminals inside the fencing for a couple months. Too bad we don’t have a prosecution team willing to go after the dems and their corruption.

Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice.
Moderation in pursuit of justice is no virtue
– Barry Goldwater

2022 is coming fast. Dems are poking the bear.

PARDON ALL THE JAN 6 POLITICAL PRISONERS.

    Milhouse in reply to Ben Kent. | July 20, 2021 at 2:06 am

    Whom are you asking to pardon them? Biden?! Harris, if and when she takes over?! Whom, then? There’s no chance of anyone pardoning them until 2025 at the earliest. By which time, one hopes, they’ll all be free anyway; but a pardon to restore their dignity and rights would be appropriate.

Hunter Biden.

I rest my case.

E Howard Hunt | July 20, 2021 at 12:11 am

I thought the punishment excessive until AOC explained it was a capitol offense.

It was 6 months less than the bottom of the guidelines range ffs, how is that throwing the book at them?

    LibraryGryffon in reply to Awing1. | July 20, 2021 at 1:35 am

    Since TPTB refuse to even charge (or even arrest) the rioters burning down cities with anything, never mind keeping them on house arrest or in solitary for six months, that alone is throwing the book at all of them.

    Walking into the capital building when the capital police have opened the doors for you shouldn’t even be charged if law enforcement is going to ignore folks trying to burn down cities.

      1) thousands of people that participated in riots last year were arrested and charged. Hundreds were arrested and then charged with crimes *they could not have committed because they had already been detained by police elsewhere when those crimes occurred* during the violent protests of Trump’s inaugural. You’re simply flat wrong here bud.

      2) and same for here, flat wrong. Capitol police did not open doors for the Jan 6 rioters. I’ve seen all the videos where people claim that happened, and not a single one actually shows Capitol police opening doors for them. They show instances of Capitol police standing down when outnumbered.

      This guy broke in with a mob and went to the well of the Senate Chamber to obstruct the peaceful transfer of power.

        Sanddog in reply to Awing1. | July 20, 2021 at 12:39 pm

        He didn’t break in.. he walked in through an open door, He didn’t fight the police, he didn’t engage in any violence. By the time he entered the building, the Senate chamber had already been cleared so he didn’t obstruct a damned thing. Tell me, when left wing protesters obstruct confirmation hearings, do you call for felony convictions? How many of those dumb broads were convicted during the Kavanaugh hearings? Or is that different because they were trying to stop the right?

        You’re a reactionary and a hypocrite. You willfully ignore what is obvious for what you “feel”.

          Awing1 in reply to Sanddog. | July 20, 2021 at 1:31 pm

          He broke in with a mob. That he wasn’t at the front, that others applied the unlawful physical force to open the doors and windows he walked through, is not really relevant. The mob he was a part of is why the Senate chamber was cleared, his unlawful presence in the Senate chamber was part of why they couldn’t resume. He absolutely obstructed the proceedings, and he admitted that doing so was his intent.

          I don’t advocate for any particular conviction. I’m correcting false statements of the user I replied to. You can keep trying to cycle through things to compare it to: riots as the person I replied to did (and as I addressed), protesters during the Kavanaugh hearings which I’ve addressed elsewhere in this thread, but it’s going to keep coming to the same thing: law enforcement and prosecutors did take action against them, and differences arise because they are demonstrably different acts and had demonstrably different results. If you want to talk about how harsh our criminal justice system is and whether these punishments are appropriate in the abstract, we can have that discussion for sure. But if you’re trying to claim this is some outlandish bias against these particular people, it’s clear you haven’t been paying attention, and only do so now because of who is being affected.

    Milhouse in reply to Awing1. | July 20, 2021 at 2:10 am

    All he did was a simple trespass, ffs. And if the door was already open and unmanned then he didn’t even do that, because he had no notice that entry was forbidden. If the guidelines prescribe 14 months for that then there’s something wrong with the guidelines.

      mark311 in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 5:43 am

      So your argument is if the doors open to some ones house its ok to enter it. No.

        Brave Sir Robbin in reply to mark311. | July 21, 2021 at 6:49 pm

        It’s a public building. There is no presumption of forbidden access unless so posted. In a public building left open, yes you may enter, and stay, until instructed to leave, and then you must, or else commit trespass. If a person has access to their home from communal property, and there are no postings, and if that person leaves their doors and windows wide open, a defense would be the property owner gave implied consent to be on the land and in the home. Again, once the owner instructed this person to leave, and that person failed to leave, then there would be a trespass, but only then.

        In the case of the US capitol, If the capitol building security had broadcast instructions for people to leave, even if the doors were wide open and unguarded, the protestors would be required to leave, and anyone wandering into the facility after the fact of the breach would also have been required to leave who was not otherwise entitled to be in the building. But simply walking into an open, unguarded building with no positing is not even trespass. However, if you participated in the original breach, and I would say even if you were witness to security trying to keep people out, then you would had reasonable notice that you were not welcome, and your subsequent entry is trespass, so in the capitol instance, timing of entry is important. But it’s still only trespass. If there is no other criminal record, suspended sentence or probation is the appropriate outcome.

      Awing1 in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 9:18 am

      Yes, how could he have known he wasn’t allowed to go into the well of the Senate chamber and ruffle through Senate papers. He probably thought he was completely allowed to do that, which is why he put on latex gloves before doing so.

“a kit meant that Hodgkins anticipated the possibility of being involved in a violent conflict in D.C”
Yes, we call them Antifa.

It builds the narrative for those to come

“Today, the court is the one that lost its way. And how it dealt with Paul Hodgkins says a lot about where we are today as a nation.”

For that we can thank the nations law schools and the unethical scum they produce and allow to practice before the bar.

worst insurrection in history.
believe me if we wanted to start an actual insurrection very few members of congress would have been able to speak of it afterwards.

So the Biden administration and the left has now gotten their first political prisoner, with more to follow. Walking through an open door and taking a selfie is now a felony but occupying the Senate building or obstructing SCOTUS nominee hearings, doesn’t even rate a misdemeanor conviction. If the left believes they will gain the complete submission of their political opponents by jailing every one of them on bullshit charges, they may get more than they bargained for.

    MarkS in reply to Sanddog. | July 20, 2021 at 12:58 pm

    Really? What “more” did you have in mind? What exactly are you willing to do prevent the Left from jailing its political opponents? Methinks we’ve a keyboard tough guy amongst us!

The way I see things, is that the leftists and never Trump types have failed time and again in their efforts to punish Trump himself, so they’re going after anyone who supported him. Their vindictive frustration has to be projected somewhere, and upon someone.

It’s like the leftists have a never-ending reservoir of hatred and contempt, and they have to constantly inflict that hate upon someone, anyone, just to exist.

The leftist are delusional if they believe leftist will not do exactly the same thing in the future. BLM/antifa are crazy with jealously that they have not stormed the capital in DC. It will happen, then the Dems will slap all on the wrists and nothing much will happen. Dems think nobody is paying attention, but the common man is paying attention. The common man hates the double standard

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