Federal Judge Upholds Year-Long Prison Sentence For January 6 Demonstrator After Admitting He Was ‘Neither Violent Nor Destructive’
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 6: Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as people try to storm the US Capitol on January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC. Demonstrators breeched security and entered the Capitol as Congress debated the 2020 presidential election Electoral Vote Certification.
Brent Stirton/Getty Images

On the eve of the third anniversary of the January 6 Capitol riot, a federal court ruled against a pro-Trump demonstrator, saying that even though he was “neither violent nor destructive,” he could still be convicted of disorderly conduct and sentenced to a year in prison.

Russell Alford was sentenced on February 23, 2023, to a year in prison after being found guilty of entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, and parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building.

Alford challenged “the reasonableness of his sentence and the sufficiency of the evidence to support two of his convictions, both of which charged him with engaging in ‘disorderly or disruptive conduct.’” But D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson wrote Friday that the court affirmed his convictions, The Hill reported.

“The trial evidence indicated that, during Alford’s brief time within the Capitol, he was neither violent nor destructive,” wrote Henderson, a George H.W. Bush appointee. “Nevertheless, we affirm his convictions because a jury could rationally find that his unauthorized presence in the Capitol as part of an unruly mob contributed to the disruption of the Congress’s electoral certification and jeopardized public safety.”

“[I]t is equally clear from caselaw that even passive, quiet and nonviolent conduct can be disorderly,” the judge added in her ruling.

Immediately following the storming of the Capitol, the FBI began a years-long investigation into those who were present or participated in the massive demonstration on Capitol Hill as Congress met to vote on certification of the 2020 election. Since then, the Department of Justice has charged 452 people with assaulting, resisting, or impeding officers or employees, which includes 123 people “who have been charged with using a deadly or dangerous weapon or causing serious bodily injury to an officer.”

The vast majority of the charges — 1,186 — are for “entering or remaining in a restricted federal building or grounds.” Some who weren’t even present at the Capitol on January 6 have also been sentenced. Former Proud Boys chairman Enrique Tarrio was sentenced to 22 years behind bars, the longest January 6 sentence to date, after being found guilty of seditious conspiracy.


Meanwhile, federal officials are still looking for a suspect as they investigate two pipe bombs that were planted outside the Democratic and Republican National Committees’ offices in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021. A bulletin issued by the FBI on Thursday said a $500,000 reward, which would be given in exchange for information leading to an individual’s arrest and conviction, “remains in effect.”

Daniel Chaitin contributed to this report.

Create a free account to join the conversation!

Already have an account?

Log in

Got a tip worth investigating?

Your information could be the missing piece to an important story. Submit your tip today and make a difference.

Submit Tip
Download Daily Wire Plus

Don't miss anything

Download our App

Stay up-to-date on the latest
news, podcasts, and more.

Download on the app storeGet it on Google Play
The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Federal Judge Upholds Year-Long Prison Sentence For January 6 Demonstrator After Admitting He Was ‘Neither Violent Nor Destructive’