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Ex-Proud Boys organizer gets 17 years in prison, second longest sentence in Jan. 6 Capitol riot case

by Michael Nguyen
5 comments
Proud Boys Sentencing

Former Proud Boys organizer Joseph Biggs has been handed a prison sentence of 17 years for his role in orchestrating an assault on the U.S. Capitol with the intent to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power from Donald Trump to Joe Biden following the 2020 presidential election. This marks the second-longest sentence among the various Capitol riot cases, surpassed only by the 18-year prison term received by Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the Oath Keepers.

Biggs, who had been a key figure in the far-right Proud Boys extremist group, led a group of its members and associates in a march to the Capitol on January 6, 2021. Their actions contributed to breaching police lines, causing lawmakers to evacuate and interrupting the joint Congressional session responsible for certifying Joe Biden’s electoral victory.

U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly stressed the gravity of the attack, stating that it undermined a crucial American tradition of peacefully transferring power through the Electoral College vote. The judge expressed his concerns that the events of January 6 disrupted this process, leaving a lasting impact on the nation’s democratic framework.

While Biggs admitted to making a mistake that day, he attributed his actions to being influenced by the fervor of the crowd of Trump supporters gathered outside the Capitol. He denied harboring violent intentions or being a “terrorist.” Prosecutors, however, contended that Biggs and the Proud Boys were responsible for committing some of the most serious crimes the court has considered, which pushed the government to the brink of a constitutional crisis.

Judge Kelly factored in a “terrorism” enhancement to the recommended prison sentence for Biggs, which substantially increased the penalty. This enhancement, along with the judge’s determination to prevent such an event from recurring, led to the 17-year sentence.

In addition to Biggs, four other Proud Boys were convicted and await sentencing. This group includes Enrique Tarrio, the former national chairman and leader of the Proud Boys, who is scheduled for sentencing later. The trial brought to light the extremist elements’ alignment with baseless claims made by Donald Trump regarding the alleged theft of the 2020 election.

The court’s handling of this case carries a message of deterrence, emphasizing the significance of preventing such an attack from happening again. The severity of the sentence intends to underscore the importance of maintaining the democratic process and the peaceful transition of power. As more than 1,100 individuals face charges related to the Capitol riot, these cases collectively shape the nation’s response to the attack and its implications for the future.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Capitol riot sentencing

Who received the second-longest sentence in the Capitol riot cases?

Former Proud Boys organizer Joseph Biggs received a 17-year prison sentence for his role in the attack on the U.S. Capitol.

What was the intent behind the attack on the Capitol?

The attack aimed to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power from Donald Trump to Joe Biden following the 2020 presidential election.

What impact did the attack have on the democratic process?

The attack on January 6, 2021, disrupted an important American tradition of peacefully transferring power, highlighting the significance of maintaining the Electoral College vote as a core democratic principle.

What role did Joseph Biggs play in the attack?

Joseph Biggs led a group of Proud Boys members and associates in marching to the Capitol, breaching police lines, and contributing to the disruption of the joint Congressional session certifying Joe Biden’s electoral victory.

How did the court handle the sentencing of Joseph Biggs?

U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly emphasized the seriousness of the attack and applied a “terrorism” enhancement, resulting in a 17-year prison sentence to deter future similar events.

What message does the sentencing aim to convey?

The severity of the sentence intends to underscore the importance of preventing such attacks in the future, emphasizing the need to protect the democratic process and peaceful transition of power.

How many individuals were charged in connection to the Capitol riot?

Over 1,100 people have faced charges related to the Capitol riot, with more than 600 convictions and sentences.

What other individuals were involved in the Capitol riot?

Enrique Tarrio and other Proud Boys members also played roles in the attack and are awaiting sentencing, shedding light on their alignment with unfounded claims of election theft.

How does this case impact the nation’s response to the attack?

The collective handling of these cases shapes the nation’s response to the Capitol riot, serving as a significant marker in addressing the attack’s implications for the nation’s future.

More about Capitol riot sentencing

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5 comments

journoman88 August 31, 2023 - 10:08 pm

oh wow, this Biggs dude got like 17 years for messin’ up the Capitol thing. crazy how things turn out huh, democracy matters!

Reply
autoAficionado September 1, 2023 - 3:13 am

Capitol chaos, Proud Boys organizer jailed 17 years. Lesson: car enthusiasts better stick to engines, not riots.

Reply
cryptoHype September 1, 2023 - 7:52 am

Attack on Capitol, serious sentence. Biggs in trouble, Proud Boys linked to attack. Democracy shook, dude!

Reply
politicsNerd42 September 1, 2023 - 6:24 pm

proud boys, riot, jail, whoa! big sentences show serious business. lesson: no messin’ with Capitol, dudes.

Reply
financeWhiz September 1, 2023 - 6:40 pm

Biggs’ 17-year prison time, serious impact on democracy. Finance lesson: messing Capitol = big trouble!

Reply

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