Report: J6 defendant who never entered Capitol and ‘didn’t attack police’ faces 30 years in prison

by WorldTribune Staff, April 23, 2023

A U.S. Navy veteran and father of four who attended President Donald Trump’s speech on Jan. 6, 2021 and walked to but never entered the Capitol building is facing 30 years in prison on 12 federal charges, a report said.

K. Joseph Thomas attended Trump’s speech at the Ellipse and “followed the crowd who had been invited by the president to protest peacefully and patriotically at the U.S. Capitol,” The Gateway Pundit reported on Sunday.

K. Joseph Thomas

Thomas, of Ohio, never entered the Capitol building “and never attacked a police officer, but they wielded their batons freely over the back of his head,” the report noted.

“Upon seeing a lone backpack hanging 8 feet high in a tree, he alerted U.S. Secret Service Agents. They were nonplussed. Joe found several box cutters and turned them over to the Secret Service as well,” according to the report by Alicia Powe.

Thomas arrived at the Capitol after 3 p.m., well after Congress had evacuated and moved to the front of the protest after smelling tear gas, the report said. “He preached ‘No violence!’ and ‘We back the blue!’ ”

Thomas “took pipes away from people and handed them to the police,” the report added. “He defended an elderly man lying on the ground, bleeding from his head after being struck by police.”

The Department of Justice said in a press release announcing the arrest of Thomas: “According to court documents, Thomas was on the Upper West Terrace at 4:22 p.m. where he was captured on Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) body-worn camera (BWC) footage advancing toward a line of law enforcement and pushing against their shields. As depicted in the footage, Thomas punched and struck the officers with his fist and forearm at least twice. At 4:26 p.m., officers began to dispel the crowd of rioters from the steps. Thomas turned toward rioters and ordered them to ‘hold the line’ against advancing officers, repeating this several times. In subsequent interviews, law enforcement officers confirmed the attack and stated the individual ‘was one of the first to come in and start hitting [and] pushing officers on the line.’ ”

Thomas said: “I was not violent. I did not destroy anything. I did not go in the building. … Over the past 2 years, the court has delayed my hearings as they seek evidence to convict on my now 12 federal charges. Recently, I fired my public defender and hope to raise enough funds for my newly hired private counsel.”

Thomas said that he was “made aware that my picture appeared on the FBI’s Most Wanted List posted on Facebook. As a result, I sought legal counsel who advised me to let them find me themselves. Soon afterward, I began noticing signs I was being surveilled. Early one morning in May 2021, while on the road for work, I was caught off guard by a flash bang grenade and shouts from a fully armed FBI counterterrorism SWAT team to get down. I fully cooperated, immediately, without resistance. They then executed a search warrant collecting clothing and electronic devices from my hotel room.”

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