A Maryland man who attacked police and a photographer from The Associated Press during the Jan. 6, 2021, riot on the Capitol was sentenced to five years in prison on Friday, according to the Justice Department (DOJ).
Rodney Milstreed pleaded guilty to assaulting a police officer with a deadly weapon and illegal firearm possession in April. He was ordered to pay $2,000 in restitution.
According to prosecutors, Milstreed was “front and center” in the effort to fight against police lines in front of the Capitol Building. This includes throwing a smoke grenade at police and fighting over bike racks used as makeshift barriers.
He hit at least one Capitol Police officer in the head with the flag pole he was carrying, giving the officer a concussion, according to the DOJ. He was also one of the first people to attack an AP photographer, throwing them down a flight of stairs and leading a group to attack them, the documents said.
Milstreed also used Facebook to update his friends on the riot in real time.
“Man I’ve never seen anything like this. I feel so alive.” he wrote, sharing photos of blood on a floor outside the Capitol.
After the riots, he celebrated his participation online.
“We f— them federal cops up. They all ran when we got physical. LMFAO,” he wrote on Facebook, later adding, “Time for war.”
He expressed remorse during his sentencing.
“I know what I did that day was very wrong,” he said, the AP reported.
The weapons charge stemmed from a search of his home after his arrest, where police found an unregistered AR-15 rifle.
Milstreed was moved to violence by his dissatisfaction with the results of the 2020 election. Investigators said that he once attempted to contact and join the Proud Boys militia group.
More than 1,100 people have been charged with Jan. 6-related federal crimes, the Justice Department said. Over 650 of them have been sentenced, with roughly two-thirds of them getting a term of imprisonment ranging from three days to 22 years.
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