Capitol Protester Threatened With 20 Yrs In Prison
Takes Plea Deal
by Shari Dovale
Paul Allard Hodgkins, 38, carried a Trump flag and prayed on the Senate Floor on January 6th.
For this peaceful crime, the Feds overcharged him with “obstructing an official proceeding of Congress” and threatened him with 20 years in prison.
Hodgkins has accepted a plea deal leaving him facing some “15 to 21 months [in prison] under federal guidelines.”
The Washington Post reports (emphasis added):
In admitting to the stiffest felony count charged by prosecutors against individuals not otherwise accused of conspiracy or violence in the Capitol riot, Hodgkins faces a prison sentence of 15 to 21 months under federal guidelines. His sentencing is poised to become a test case watched by other defendants deciding whether to accept pleas, several defense lawyers said.
Prosecutor Mona Sedky estimated damage to the Capitol at $1.5 million — the first time prosecutors have given a public cost estimate.
Prosecutors agreed to drop four misdemeanor counts of trespassing and disorderly conduct in the restricted Capitol building and grounds. They also agreed to give Hodgkins credit for accepting responsibility, pleading in a timely manner and paying compensation.
Hodgkins is one of about 450 defendants federally charged in the riots, which authorities said contributed to five deaths, assaults on nearly 140 police and the evacuation of a joint session of Congress.
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