Capitol rioter sentencing postponed after release of new incriminating footage

Capitol rioter sentencing postponed after release of new incriminating footage
US Capitol Grounds East Plaza off First Street and East Capitol Street, Washington DC on Wednesday afternoon, 6 January 2021 by Elvert Barnes Photography

A Capitol rioter's sentencing was abruptly canceled when more incriminating footage surfaced from the insurrection.

In June, Robert Reeder pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor charge of parading, demonstrating, and picketing in the federal building; a crime that Buzzfeed describes as "a nonviolent offense and one of the lowest-level charges filed in connection with the Jan. 6 insurrection."

Although U.S. prosecutors reportedly wanted him to be sentenced to at least two months behind bars, he was reportedly prepared to argue for no jail time at all.

However, prosecutors' latest development may derail Reeder's case and ultimately his argument about jail time.

When Assistant U.S. Attorney Josh Rothstein appeared before U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan for Reeder's sentencing, he confirmed "that the government had become aware of the new video footage earlier in the day and immediately notified the court and Reeder's lawyer."

In one video, Reeder could be heard narrating details about his experience at the Capitol. In that video, he said, "Just left the Capitol, I was one of the last people out. I was in there for over half an hour. I got gassed several times inside the Capitol, many times outside the Capitol. Got shot with pepper balls. It was fucking nuts. We had to do... ah... battle with the Police inside. It was crazy... absolutely insane."

However, footage of another clip uploaded to social media depicts a very different encounter as it allegedly shows Reeder attacking a police officer. Judge Hogan admitted that he was "'obviously concerned' about the new development because the original evidence in Reeder's case portrayed him as an 'observer' more than a 'participant.'"

Investigators have relied on body cam footage provided by the D.C., police department. However, U.S. Capitol did not have that equipment at the time of the riot.

The online footage is now the most incriminating aspect of Reeder's case. Reeder's sentencing hearing has been postponed until October. His attorney is also in agreement with the change.

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