Two more Oath Keepers members sentenced to prison over US Capitol attack

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WASHINGTON - Two members of the far-right Oath Keepers were sentenced to prison on Friday for their roles in the deadly Jan 6, 2021, assault on the US Capitol by supporters of Donald Trump who tried to overturn his presidential election defeat.

Kenneth Harrelson and Jessica Watkins were convicted in November by a federal jury in Washington of obstruction of an official proceeding for their roles in the storming of the Capitol, which saw rioters battle police, smash windows and send lawmakers running for their lives.

US District Judge Amit Mehta on Friday sentenced Harrelson to four years in prison. Earlier on Friday, the judge imposed a prison sentence of eight and a half years for Watkins.

Harrelson was also found guilty of conspiring to prevent members of Congress from certifying President Joe Biden’s election win as well as tampering with documents and proceedings. Watkins was also convicted of conspiracy and obstruction of officers during the riots.

Watkins and Harrelson were acquitted of seditious conspiracy charges.

Mehta said he believes Harrelson is “genuinely remorseful” and that he did not think the Oath Keeper was as responsible as other members of the far-right militia he was charged alongside.

The judge added that the evidence in Harrelson’s case did not include messages from him that talked about “revolution” or other extremist terms, like other Oath Keepers had, and noted that he did not physically attack or threaten to assault any police officers at the Capitol that day.

Evidence displayed during trial included a video in which Harrelson could be heard chanting the word “treason” as he entered the U.S. Capitol.

“He wanted to intimidate members of Congress and people working in that building,” prosecutor Jeffrey Nestler said.

Harrelson told the court on Friday that he never thought about politics before Jan. 6, and that he would have tried to stop others’ violence against police offic...

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