Law/Justice

Nazi Sympathizer and Ex-Army Reservist Who Stormed U.S. Capitol Will Spend the Next Four Years Behind Bars for Jan. 6 Felony

By Law and Crime

A former Army Reservist with a history of neo-Nazi rhetoric and imagery will spend the next four years in prison following his felony conviction in connection with the siege of the U.S. Capitol, a federal judge ruled on Thursday.

The sentence, though one of the heaviest to date on the Jan 6 docket, is a little more than two years shorter than prosecutors requested following his conviction for felony obstruction of an official proceeding and multiple misdemeanors.

Timothy Hale-Cusanelli, who once held a “Secret” security clearance, came to symbolize for many how extremists penetrated the U.S. military and joined the attack on the U.S. Capitol. Court papers showed him posing as Adolf Hitler, sporting the genocidal dictator’s mustache and mannerisms. His defense attorney insisted the images misrepresented Hale-Cusanelli, whom the lawyer claimed was spoofing coronavirus lockdowns as authoritarian.

Playing down his client’s white supremacist associations at every turn, Hale-Cusanelli’s defense attorney asserts that the images and quotations were taken out of context. But a wealth of other evidence showed the ex-Army reservist voicing, embracing and signaling support for the Nazi regime.

A government informant quoted Hale-Cusanelli saying Hitler should have “finished the job” and expressing other virulently antisemitic and racist sentiments. Government investigators found 34 co-workers willing to speak about Hale-Cusanelli “having extremist or radical views pertaining to the Jewish people, minorities, and women.”

Shortly before his sentencing, U.S District Judge Trevor McFadden, a Donald Trump appointee, denied Hale-Cusanelli’s request for a new trial. The judge rejected the defense’s argument that the court should have barred any evidence of his incendiary and racist remarks. McFadden said that he only admitted comments that spoke to his motive for entering the Capitol.

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