The Washington DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday that former President Trump does not have immunity from lawsuits related to the deadly January 6, 2021 insurrection on the U.S. Capitol.
The appeals court’s ruling comes in the wake of three lawsuits filed by Capitol Police officers and members of Congress who accused Trump and his allies of inciting the violence that ensued amid the then-President’s efforts to stop Congress in its Congressional duty to certify then-President-elect Biden’s 2020 electoral college victory.
The court ruled that because his actions surrounding January 6 were related to his political campaign and not his Oval Office duties, Trump can not be shielded from from lawsuits by presidential immunity.
Trump’s influence on January 6 rioters has come up numerous times in prosecutions of those convicted for their actions at the Capitol that day. For instance, federal prosecutors argued that former Proud Boys Chair Enrique Tarrio was a member of “Trump’s army,” stirring fellow Proud Boys toward violence in the lead-up to January 6 and directing them that day to attack the U.S. Capitol building.
Tarrio was sentenced to 22 years in prison in September for seditious conspiracy and other charges related to January 6.
Four people died during the insurrection, and five police officers died of various causes following the attack.