Four more Oath Keepers convicted of Jan. 6 felonies
Four more members of the Oath Keepers were convicted Monday of conspiracy to obstruct Congress’ Jan. 6 proceedings, bringing the number of members of the group found guilty by juries of felonies related to the Capitol attack to more than a dozen.
Jurors found Sandra Parker, Laura Steele, Connie Meggs and William Isaacs each guilty of the most significant charges they faced: conspiracy to obstruct Congress’ proceedings, obstruction of an official proceeding, and conspiracy to prevent a federal officer from discharging duties.
The four were also found guilty of several other charges they faced, including destruction of government property.
The convictions add to a growing roster of Oath Keepers who are facing lengthy prison terms for their role in the events on Jan. 6. Stewart Rhodes, the group’s national leader was convicted in November of seditious conspiracy, along with Kelly Meggs — husband of Connie Meggs. In a second trial, four other Oath Keepers were convicted of seditious conspiracy: Roberto Minuta, David Moerschel, Joseph Hackett and Ed Vallejo.
Across the three multi-defendant trials, prosecutors have portrayed the group as a key driver of events on Jan. 6, conspiring to prevent the peaceful transfer of power from Donald Trump to Joe Biden, with some of them prepared to turn violent to achieve that end. Prosecutors noted that they had amassed a stockpile of weapons that they stashed at a hotel in Arlington, Va. that they discussed ferrying into Washington if the events had turned even more violent than they did.
Oath Keeper defendants argued that they were simply in Washington to perform security details for VIPs at Trump’s rally, which preceded the violent riot at the Capitol.
Monday’s verdict was less clear for two other defendants in the third Oath Keepers trial: Bennie Parker and Michael Greene.
Parker, who didn’t go into the Capitol, was acquitted of obstruction and conspiracy to prevent an officer from discharging duties, but the jury was deadlocked on whether he conspired with other Oath Keepers to obstruct Congress’ proceedings.
Greene was acquitted of that charge, and of conspiracy to prevent an officer from discharging duties, but the jury was stuck on whether he participated in the actual obstruction of Congress’ Jan. 6 session. Greene was also acquitted of evidence tampering.
Both men, however, were convicted of misdemeanor counts of entering and remaining in a restricted building. The jury will continue to deliberate on the two deadlocked charges to see if it can return a unanimous verdict.
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Author: By Kyle Cheney