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Two weeks before President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, the U.S. Capitol building was stormed by Trump supporters in an act of defiance. In the wake of the incident, dozens of them have already been charged and several cases are expected to see the light of day.
Crimes that US Capitol Building Rioters Can Face
Some of the crimes that the rioters can be charged with require a federal criminal defense. Here are some of them:
Unlawful entry is a crime under the Washington D.C. criminal code and as per federal law. Some of the members who have already been charged include Nicholas Ochs, a member of the Proud Boys, a far-right group who infamously posted a picture of himself inside the building. The crime has a broader definition than breaking and entering or trespassing.
A civil war era sedition law is being considered for potential use when it comes to charging rioters who attacked Capitol Hill. The law was used decades ago. As per the application of the law, it is a crime to overthrow or conspire to overthrow or destroy the US government. It also comes into effect if two or more people conspire to hinder, delay or prevent the execution of US law or are involved in the destruction of federal property.
A number of rioters were armed when they stormed the Capitol Building and can be charged if found guilty. Federal laws prohibit gun (or any weapon) possession in the building. Besides firearms, one rioter was also caught with bombs, machetes, and even crossbows in his truck that were supposed to be used during the riot.
Assaulting Federal Law Officers
Besides the aforementioned charges, some rioters may also be charged with assaulting federal law enforcement officers which is a federal crime. One of them includes Michael Leffingwell, who punched a police officer while storming the Capitol Building.
Nothing is more intimidating than being charged in federal court. If you are facing a similar situation, you need an attorney who can represent you aggressively and has experience in acquiring acquittals for clients. Michael Ettinger has an amazing track record in this regard as do his team members at Michael D. Ettinger & Associates. Get in touch with the law firm in Palos, Heights for a consultation today. Don’t wait if you are under investigation by a federal agency. Call us for a free meeting today.