Before heading into a hearing where he pleaded guilty to a felony charge of assaulting law enforcement, Capitol rioter Robert Palmer was seen in tears on Monday. As summarized by a D.C.-area CBS affiliate, Palmer “displayed a different bearing than the man captured in images from the riot – sobbing onto the shoulder of his defense attorney Bjorn Brunvand moments before the two men entered the court for Palmer to plead guilty to felony assault on law enforcement.” Palmer violently assaulted police at the Capitol back in January, where he hurled a wooden plank at officers, emptied a fire extinguisher on officers, and then threw the empty canister at the police line. When sentenced in December, he faces recommended sentencing guidelines of four to four and a half years in jail.
Brunvand said that the crying “was Mr. Palmer being remorseful for what he did on January 6th, and also, afraid of what’s to come.” Perhaps Palmer should have thought of the potential consequences when he participated in the assault on law enforcement that collectively left well over 100 officers injured, some with especially lasting repercussions from the savagery that they endured. Palmer immediately entered federal custody after pleading guilty, with Brunvand adding as follows:
‘Unfortunately, he did some things that he shouldn’t have done. He knows he shouldn’t have done them, and those things will forever be part of the American history and he’s part of that.’
Although Palmer showed remorse, former President Donald Trump — whose lies about the integrity of last year’s election originally fueled the riot — has taken the opposite approach. In a recent statement, he embraced those who’ve faced charges, saying that Americans’ “hearts and minds are with the people being persecuted so unfairly relating to the January 6th protest concerning the Rigged Presidential Election,” adding that recent developments have “proven conclusively that we are a two-tiered system of justice.” Obviously, describing an event where participants brutally beat police — and threw items including a wooden plank and fire extinguisher at them — as anything close to a mere protest is utterly and inescapably ridiculous.