Judge sets Sentencing Dates for More Oath Keepers Related to January 6

June 30, 2023

U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta in DC has begun setting sentencing dates for members of the extremist Oath Keepers who pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges related to the deadly January 6, 2021 insurrection on the U.S Capitol. 

A January 6, 2024 sentencing date was set for 34-year-old Joshua James who pleaded guilty in March to seditious conspiracy and obstruction of an official proceeding.  

James was the first suspect to plead guilty to seditious conspiracy for actions related to January 6.

According to the Department of Justice, he was a regional leader in charge of the Alabama chapter of the Oath Keepers. In his guilty plea, he admitted that from November 2020 through January 2021, he conspired with other Oath Keeper members and affiliates to use force to “prevent, hinder and delay” Congress on January 6 from undertaking its constitutional duty to certify then-President-Elect Biden’s 2020 election victory over then-President Trump.

After entering the Capitol Rotunda on January 6, the DOJ said that “James assaulted a Metropolitan Police Department officer by grabbing the officer’s vest and pulling him towards the mob. While pulling the officer, James yelled, ‘Get out of my Capitol! This is not yours! This is my Capitol!’ James was expelled by law enforcement, including at least one officer who aimed chemical spray at him.”

A sentencing date of January 19, 202 has been set for Brian Ulrich, who also pleaded guilty to seditious conspiracy among other charges.

He admitted in his plea agreement that he, along with Oath Keepers leader Stewart Rhodes and other conspirators, “used encrypted and private communications, equipped themselves with a variety of weapons, donned combat and tactical gear, and were prepared to answer Rhodes’s call to take up arms. Members of the conspiracy amassed firearms on the outskirts of Washington, DC—some distributed across hotels and ‘quick reaction force’ (‘QRF’) teams—and planned, if called upon, to use them in support of the plan to halt the lawful transfer of presidential power.”

In May, Judge Mehta sentenced Rhodes to 18 years in prison for seditious conspiracy.

Until recently, “seditious conspiracy” had rarely been prosecuted. However, in October the former leader of another right-wing extremist group, the Proud Boys, Jeremy Bertino, pleaded guilty to the crime for his connections to the January 6 insurrection. 

Since then, along with Rhodes, the head of the group’s Florida chapter Kelly Meggs has been sentenced for seditious conspiracy, as have Oath Keepers Joseph Hackett, Edward Vallejo, Kenneth Harrelson, and David Moerschel.

Judge Mehta imposed sentencing on all, with prison time ranging from Rhodes’ 18 years down to 3 years apiece for Vallejo and Moerschel.

Mehta on Friday also announced a December 8, 2023 sentencing date for Graydon Young who pleaded guilty after being charged with conspiracy, obstruction of an official proceeding, and aiding and abetting.

According to the Justice Department, more than 1,033 suspects have been arrested in nearly all 50 states and the District of Columbia related to the assault on the U.S. Capitol. A reported more than 500 of them have been sentenced, with more than half receiving prison terms ranging from a week to over 14 years.

Four people died during the insurrection, and five police officers died of various causes following the attack.

PHOTO: Joshua James on January 6, per DOJ

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