Nearly three years after the riot that broke out at the U.S. Capitol, the mysterious Ray Epps is finally facing consequences for his part in the events that played out in the wake of the 2020 election.
But, unlike other defendants in the January 6 prosecutions who landed extended jail time, Epps will only face six months in federal prison. While critics of former President Trump have labeled claims about Epps being a federal informant “conspiracy theories,” many contend there is more to his story than is being portrayed.
“Epps, who worked as a roofer after serving four years as infantry in the U.S. Marine Corps, has vehemently denied ever working for the FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Gordon said during Epps’ plea hearing in September that he was not a confidential source for the FBI ‘or any other law enforcement agency,'” the Associated Press reported Tuesday.
BREAKING: The DOJ is recommending just six months in jail for Ray Epps, the only J6 defendant caught on camera telling people to go into the Capitol building.
They say that they gave him a plea deal because he cooperated with the FBI, tried to “descalate conflict” and was the… pic.twitter.com/K96HHz8E7v
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) January 2, 2024
In September, he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct on restricted grounds and prosecutors requested a six-month jail sentence on Tuesday, recommending the “high end of the applicable guidelines range.” The half-year stint behind bars is in addition to one year of supervised release, and $500 in restitution.
“Such a sentence protects the community, promotes respect for the law, and deters future crime by imposing restrictions on Epps’ liberty as a consequence of his behavior, while recognizing his acceptance of responsibility for his crime, his efforts to deescalate conflicts between rioters and police officers, and his cooperation with the FBI and Congress,” prosecutors said in the 29-page filing.
“Even if Epps did not physically touch law enforcement officers or go inside of the building, he undoubtedly engaged in collective aggressive conduct,” they added.
People who weren’t even in DC on January 6 are spending multiple decades in jail but the guy who actually told people to inside the Capitol will be free in less than 6 months.
Makes total sense to me!pic.twitter.com/rh0ydFdzBE
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) January 2, 2024
Prosecutors described Epps as a “unique case in the context of January 6 defendants” and noted his multiple attempts to “deescalate conflict and avoid violence between rioters and police officers,” adding that he willingly spoke with the FBI and Congress, and also expressed “what appears to be sincere remorse” for his actions.
“More than 1,237 defendants have been charged in nearly all 50 states and the District of Columbia” in the nearly three years since the “attack” on the U.S. Capitol, according to the Department of Justice.
Hundreds of individuals have pleaded guilty, been tried and sentenced including four Oath Keepers who ” have pleaded guilty to the federal charge of seditious conspiracy.” Stewart Rhodes, the group’s founder, was sentenced to 18 years behind bars.
Reactions on social media to the recommended sentencing of Epps drew a common theme in responses.
So the guy that is factually and proven to be the most influential figure that day gets the lightest sentence? Truly dark times.
— Harpolite (@harpolite_mark) January 2, 2024
How do you get credit for “de-escalating” something you escalated to begin with?!? What a joke!!!!
— I put my faith in God, not the government (@DontBidenMe) January 2, 2024
This is ridiculous. People that weren’t even there got over 20 years.
— MAGA GREG (@greg_zoommaga) January 2, 2024
No one else got this type of deal!
I’m surprised he even has to do a single day but optics are important.
— Patriot Dad ❤️✝️ (@NickCAdams) January 3, 2024
I have filed a motion to dismiss charges in my case due to selective prosecution.
While the government alleges Mr. Ray Epps engaged in felonious conduct, they charged him with a single misdemeanor, while they indicted me on eight counts and ignored the same mitigating factors. pic.twitter.com/b6XzDOaBrs
— (@FreeStateWill) January 3, 2024
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