NEW YORK (Reuters) – A former New York Metropolis police officer has been charged with utilizing an aluminum pole to assault a U.S. Capitol officer in the course of the Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol constructing by supporters of former president Donald Trump.
Thomas Webster, 54, was ordered detained by U.S. Justice of the Peace Choose Andrew Krause at an preliminary look in White Plains, New York.
Webster, who can be a former Marine, surrendered to authorities in New York’s Hudson Valley on Monday, after the FBI had sought the general public’s assist in discovering him.
A federal prosecutor mentioned the married father of three was seen on captured on video on the Capitol the place he assaulted a police officer with the pole and his naked fingers, ripped off the officer’s protecting gear, and shouted obscenities.
“These movies shocked the conscience,” Assistant U.S. Legal professional Benjamin Gianforte mentioned, including that there had been “a glance of pure rage on the defendant’s face. His enamel had been gritted.”
Webster’s lawyer argued that the defendant had gone to Washington merely to protest.
Krause agreed that Webster was not a flight threat, however mentioned he would pose a hazard to the neighborhood if launched.
“As a choose, I definitely have the utmost respect for individuals’s constitutional rights to protest and to talk out in no matter method they see match,” Krause mentioned. “However what we see on this video … goes nicely past First Modification speech and strikes into prison exercise.”
Greater than 200 individuals have been charged for his or her roles within the Capitol riot, which left 5 individuals lifeless and brought about members of Congress to flee.
The assault adopted a speech by then-Republican President Trump to his supporters the place he challenged the outcomes of the 2020 presidential election, which Democrat Joe Biden received.
Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Enhancing by Mark Heinrich