Gym owner pleads guilty in January 6th riot to assaulting an officer

A New Jersey gym owner on Friday became the first person to plead guilty to assaulting a law enforcement officer during the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Gym owner pleads guilty in January 6th riot to assaulting an officer

Scott Kevin Fairlamb's agreement with federal prosecutors could serve as a model for many other cases where Capitol rioters clashed against police. Fairlamb's lawyer stated that prosecutors would recommend a sentence of between 3 1/2 and 4 1/4 years in prison, but that the judge is not bound by the terms of the plea agreement.

He pleads guilty less than two weeks after several police officers testified before Congress about their horrific encounters with insurrectionist mobs. Five of the five officers who were present at Capitol that day died, four by suicide. According to the Justice Department, approximately 140 officers were assaulted by rioters on Jan. 6. __S.7__

Fairlamb, 44, a former mixed martial arts fighter whose brother is a U.S. Secret Service agent, was one of the very first rioters to breach the Capitol after other rioters smashed windows using riot shields and kicked out a locked door, according to federal prosecutors. According to federal prosecutors, Fairlamb attacked a group of police officers and shouted in their faces, blocking their passage through the mob.

He was seen holding a collapsible gun and shouting "What (do?) patriots do?" We f ------ disarm the men and storm the f ------ Capitol!"

U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth has set a Sept. 27 sentencing date for Fairlamb. Fairlamb was arrested Jan. 22 at his Stockholm, New Jersey, home.

Harley Breite, a defense lawyer, said that he would ask the judge to sentence him below the government's guidelines.

His attorney stated that Fairlamb's participation in the riot had "eviscerated large portions of his life."

He has lost his business. His mortgage on the home he shares with his wife, is at risk. He has been publicly disgraced," Breite stated after Friday's remote hearing.

Breite stated that his client wanted to "pay for the damage he has done, and then move on with life."

It wasn't about the deal. The lawyer said that it was about him wanting to admit to his mistakes, be a better person in the future and move forward.

Fairlamb pleaded guilty in two cases, obstruction of an officially proceeding and assaulting an officer from the Metropolitan Police Department. These charges carry a maximum sentence of 20 years imprisonment.

The 12 charges against him include civil disorder, assaulting police officers, and engaging in physical violence on restricted grounds or buildings.

According to an FBI agent's statement, Fairlamb was also seen punching and shoving a police officer after he left Capitol.

Prosecutors wrote that the defendant, a former MMA fighter was aware of the injuries he could have caused to (the officer). His actions and words that day indicate a clear intent to block a congressional proceeding by fear, intimidation and violence, as well as violence against uniformed officers.

Breite claimed that Fairlamb's brother was one the Secret Service agents who protected Michelle Obama.

Fairlamb's social media accounts indicated that he subscribed to the QAnon conspiracy theory and promoted a bogus claim that former President Donald Trump would become the first president of "the new Republic" on March 4, prosecutors wrote. QAnon's baseless belief that Trump was fighting against a group of Satan-worshipping and child sex trading cannibals has been the foundation of QAnon. This includes prominent Democrats and Hollywood elites.

The protesters attempted to disrupt President Joe Biden's certification of his election victory. They believed Trump's lies about being robbed of a second term due to massive voter fraud across the country. In fact, claims of massive fraud have been refuted by numerous judges, state election officials and even Trump's own administration.

Devlyn Thompson is another defendant accused of assaulting an officer at Capitol. He will plead guilty to the charges on Friday following Fairlamb's hearing. Thompson, a Washington resident, was last month charged with using a baton against a Metropolitan Police Department sergeant.

Thompson has not been arrested. In a court filing, Thompson's defense lawyers stated that he suffers from autism spectrum disorder. He was kept out of jail while awaiting his sentencing.

They wrote that Counsel was currently evaluating whether Thompson should be examined by an expert to assess the effect (his) Asperger's Syndrome may've had on the offense conduct.

A House panel investigating the deadly riot on July 27 heard the emotional testimony of four police officers who tried and protected the Capitol from a mob of Trump supporters.

Nine people were killed in rioting at the Capitol Jan. 6. Other police officers, including two Metropolitan Police officers, have also died from suicide within the last month.

Ashli Babbitt was shot and killed by police as she was part of a group that attempted to knock down the House chamber's doors. Three other Trump supporters died from medical emergencies.

Federal crimes have been committed against more than 560 people, with authorities still looking for hundreds of others. According to the Justice Department, at least 165 people have been charged with assaulting and resisting Capitol employees or officers. More than 50 others were also charged with using deadly or dangerous weapons or causing serious bodily harm to an officer.

Fairlamb is the least 32nd defendant to plead guilty. The majority of the other defendants have pleaded guilty or guilty to misdemeanor charges including parading, demonstration, and picketing in a Capitol Building.

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