by WorldTribune Staff, July 21, 2021
A Florida man who was arrested for entering the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 has been sentenced to eight months in prison even though he did not engage in violence.
Paul Allard Hodgkins of Tampa was sentenced Monday after he pleaded guilty to a single felony count of obstructing an official proceeding. He was identified in videos and photos taken inside the Senate chamber carrying a Trump 2020 flag.
It is the longest sentence meted out of the three Jan. 6 defendants sentenced thus far.
U.S. District Court Judge Randolph Moss told Hodgkins: “Although you were only one member of a larger mob, you actively participated in a larger event that threatened the Capitol and democracy itself.”
Mona Sedky, an assistant U.S. attorney, argued that imposing prison time on the Jan. 6 defendants “will send a loud and clear message to other would-be rioters that if and when they’re caught, they will face a serious sentence. So there won’t be a next time.”
Critics say that message is only being sent to the so-called “rioters” who entered the Capitol on Jan. 6.
Hundreds of people arrested in connection with the Black Lives Matter/Antifa riots of last summer “have seen their charges dismissed,” Breitbart’s Kristina Wong noted in a July 20 report.
A June 2021 analysis of New York Police Department data by NBC New York found there were 485 arrests in Manhattan, but 222 had their cases dropped and 73 got lesser counts. Another 40 cases involved juveniles and were sent to family court, and 128 cases remained open. In the Bronx, of 118 arrests made, 73 cases were dismissed, 18 cases remained open, and there were only 19 convictions on counts like trespassing that carried no jail time.
According to a September 2020 Associated Press report, there were already more than 300 arrests on federal crimes since George Floyd’s death – violent crimes including arson for throwing Molotov cocktails and burning police cars, and injuring law enforcement. About one-third of the cases were for crimes in Portland, including assaulting a deputy U.S. marshal with a baseball bat, setting fires and setting off explosives at the federal courthouse and throwing rocks at officers.
According to an April 2021 Wall Street Journal report, federal prosecutors in Portland have moved to dismiss almost half the cases.
Colorado Republican Rep. Lauren Boebert is demanding Team Biden’s Department of Justice explain the disparate treatment of the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill protesters versus the 2020 Black Lives Matter rioters who attacked federal buildings.
In a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland, Boebert and 10 other House Republicans asked the DOJ to address “the apparent inconsistent application of the law with respect to rioters across the country.”
“The foundation of our criminal justice system requires that all defendants are treated equally before the law, but the Biden regime is not living up to this solemn obligation,” Boebert said in a statement.
The letter said that Oregon prosecutors have signed off on at least a dozen “deferred resolution agreements in federal felony cases” from clashes in last year’s violent rioting, while some Jan. 6 protesters have been held in solitary confinement.
“Reports are circulating that the Biden regime has held January 6th rioters in solitary confinement, while at the same time, they are letting BLM rioters that attacked federal buildings off with just a few hours of community service,” Boebert said.
“This is not an equal standard of justice. I condemn all forms of political violence, and all political violence must be prosecuted fairly,” she said.