A Black man received the longest sentencing yet in connection to the Capitol riots that took place on Jan. 6.
On Thursday, Oct. 21, Troy Anthony Smocks of Dallas, Texas, was sentenced to 14 months in prison after pleading guilty to one felony count of transmitting threats in interstate commerce, WUSA reported.
However, Smocks did receive credit for nine months served while he awaited trial.
Federal prosecutor stated that the man traveled to Washington on Jan. 6 and for the next two days, repeatedly shared threats via his Parler account. It is believed he never entered the Capitol on that fateful day.
In one message the 58-year-old wrote, “Many of us will return on January 19th, 2021, carrying our weapons in support of Our nation’s resolve, to which the world will never forget. We will come in numbers that no standing army or police agency can match.”
Meanwhile, in another post, Smocks allegedly encouraged other users on the social media platform to “get our personal affairs in order” and to prepare their weapons, also telling them, “Let’s hunt these cowards down like the Traitors that each of them are.”
Prior to being sentenced by U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Judge Tanya S. Chutkan, Smocks — who reportedly has an extensive criminal history — claimed he was being discriminated against because of his race, citing Dawn Bancroft, another suspect who is white.
Bancroft was permitted to plead to a misdemeanor, despite actually trespassing on government property and entering the U.S. Capitol. On the day of the attacks, the 59-year-old white woman recorded herself looking for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi “to shoot her in the friggin’ brain.”
CNN reports that Bancroft was not charged by federal prosecutors with making the threats “because Bancroft had uttered the comment while she was exiting the Capitol, potentially making it harder to prove that the threat to Pelosi was serious.”
Bancroft’s charges of illegally demonstrating, picketing, or parading inside the Capitol carry a maximum sentence of six months in prison, a third the amount of time Smocks received.
“Your honor, this is racism,” Smocks contended, before referencing Martin Luther King Jr., claiming he shares the same “idea of justice” as the late civil rights leader.
However, Chutkan was not moved.
She slammed Smocks, telling the man, “Coming into this courtroom and trying to make yourself out to be a victim of racism. … I find that offensive.”
She continued, “There are people who died for civil rights. For you to hold yourself up somehow as a soldier in that fight is really quite audacious,” before noting that Smocks’ crime history was not that of someone capable of living “a law-abiding life.”
“I listened to every word Mr. Smocks said, and nowhere did I hear a single word of remorse,” Chutkan added. “Not a single word of acknowledgment of the enormity and seriousness of what he did.”
In addition to 14 months in prison, Smocks was handed three years of supervised release.
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