Two men, Edward Hemenway of Virginia, and Robert Bauer of Kentucky, have been sentenced to spend 45 days in jail for their involvement in the January 6 storming of the US Capitol earlier this year. They will also have to perform 60 hours of community service.
District Judge Tanya Chutkan handed them a sentence heftier than what was sought by prosecuting authorities, who had asked for a 30-day sentence. CNN reported that the judge rebuked the duo, saying they “clearly celebrated what was going on” and “looked elated” in the pictures they posted form Capitol grounds.
In fact, it was these very pictures that the prosecution relied upon as evidence. According to the Statement of Facts dated Jan 14, 2021, that is part of the Justice Department’s court filings in the case, Bauer and his wife had travelled from Kentucky to Washington D.C, to attend a Trump Rally. They attended this rally on Jan 6 with Hemenway, who is Bauer’s cousin and with whom they had been staying in his Virginia home during the visit. As per the Statement of Facts, “According to BAUER, after President Trump told the crowd, “We are going down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Capitol,” the crowd began moving towards the Capitol. BAUER, his wife, and HEMENWAY marched to the U.S. Capitol with the crowd. BAUER reiterated that he marched to the U.S. Capitol because President Trump said to do so.” While Bauer’s wife stayed outside, the men entered the Capitol, and took a series of pictures and videos that they also posted to their Facebook accounts.
Both Hemenway and Baur had pleaded guilty and claimed they were not only remorseful, but had also tried their best to turn their lives around since the attack. They have become the 16th and 17th Capitol rioters to be sentenced so far. Over 600 people are facing charges in the case.
CNN further quoted the judge as saying, “What you’re being punished for is the decision to take that protest and turn it into a violent occupation of the US Capitol… at a time when we were attempting the peaceful transfer of power. Something that has never been interrupted in our country’s history.” Courthouse News, further quoted Judge Chutkan as saying, “It’s regrettable that the true victims of this case are the police officers and staffers inside the Capitol. Officers have committed suicide, some are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. For some it was the worst day of their lives. The consequences are far reaching.”
*Feature image from Statement of Facts dated Jan 14, 2021, that is part of the Justice Department’s court filings in the case.