Trump Obsessed Rioter Found Guilty For 5 Felonies Over Jan 6 Attack


Another participant in last year’s Trump-inspired attack on the Capitol has been convicted by a jury of all the charges he faced, which in this case included five felonies. The newly convicted rioter is retired New York City police officer Thomas Webster, whose charges included assaulting, resisting or impeding an officer with a dangerous weapon — an offense that comes with up to 20 years in prison if guilty. A flag pole Webster used in his aggression towards police was the referenced “dangerous weapon.” Going forward, his sentencing is set for September 2, and he’s been allowed to remain out of custody until that point, although he’s required to wear an ankle monitor. Webster is the fourth Capitol rioter to be convicted of all charges by a jury — all of the riot cases that have gone to a trial by jury so far have ended the same way, with convictions on all counts.

Webster claimed to have been acting in self-defense when assaulting D.C. Metropolitan Police Department officer Noah Rathbun, who testified at Webster’s trial. Webster tackled Rathbun, leaving the officer on the ground and choking him by a chin strap he was wearing after Rathbun made brief physical contact with Webster amid attempts by police to stop the rampaging mob from proceeding. Webster’s defense attorney James Monroe asked jury members, “Are we ever going to accept police misconduct?.. We’re dealing with a bad cop,” referring to Rathbun — all of which seems ridiculous. That’s not remotely what’s at issue here. According to Monroe, Webster demonstrated “restraint” in his actions on the day of the riot. Restraint? Seriously? He tackled Rathbun. That’s not “restraint.” The chin strap that CNN identifies as having facilitated Webster choking Rathbun was a part of his helmet. Webster also grabbed and forcibly removed a gas mask from the officer.

As summarized by Business Insider, “Rathbun testified that he only made contact with Webster “incidentally” — and with an open hand — as he tried to gesture for him to back up from the metal barrier.” In other words, what Rathbun actually did isn’t in any way equatable with Webster’s subsequent violence. And that initial physical contact came after “Webster slammed one of the bike racks at Rathbun,” the Associated Press summarizes — so Webster instigated what unfolded. Webster’s full list of charges included assaulting, resisting or impeding an officer using a dangerous weapon; civil disorder; entering and remaining in restricted grounds with a dangerous weapon; disorderly and disruptive conduct in restricted grounds with a dangerous weapon; engaging in physical violence in restricted grounds with a dangerous weapon; and engaging in an act of physical violence on Capitol grounds, per the Associated Press. Other arguments from defendants that also failed in convincing juries to acquit them included the notion that Trump should be credited for their violent actions.

Featured Image (edited): via Blink o’fanaye on Flickr and available under a Creative Commons License