Capitol intruder carrying Confederate flag and pepper spray sentenced to prison

A Kentucky man has been sentenced to over two years in prison for using pepper spray against law enforcement officers and carrying a Confederate flag during the storming of the Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Israel James Easterday, aged 23, has been sentenced to a prison term of two and a half years accompanied by 500 hours of community service. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia has also ordered him to pay $2,000 as restitution.

Easterday made the journey from Kentucky to the nation’s capital out of frustration with the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. He then proceeded to join the mob in their attempt to storm the Capitol building. His presence was noted among the rioters gathered outside the East Rotunda doors of the Capitol building.

During the incident, Easterday received another can of pepper spray from a fellow rioter and proceeded to use it against a separate group of officers. As a result, one officer was struck in the face and experienced temporary incapacitation, according to the office’s press release.

On December 8, 2022, authorities apprehended him in Miami.

Chief Judge James Boasberg stated during the sentencing hearing that he decided to give a lesser sentence than what the prosecutors suggested because of Easterday’s young age. The Associated Press reported that the judge also mentioned that Easterday, who was homeschooled on a family farm, may not have fully understood the gravity of the events that took place during the Capitol attack on January 6, 2021.

According to the AP, Easterday expressed his apologies to the injured officers and conveyed his deep shame over his actions.

Over 1,300 individuals across almost all 50 states have faced charges in connection with the January 6 insurrection. Among them, approximately 500 individuals have been charged with the felony of assaulting or impeding law enforcement, as stated in the release.

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