Judge convicts Jan. 6 suspect -- and his son -- who brought Confederate flag to Capitol
A father and son, who were among the first rioters to enter the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, learned their fate Wednesday afternoon after a court hearing this week on federal charges seeking to get Congressional confirmation of Joe to block Biden's presidential victory.
Kevin and Hunter Seefried of Delaware were both found guilty of five counts: obstructing an official process and aiding and abetting; entering or staying in a restricted building or premises; disorderly or disruptive behavior within a restricted building or property; disorderly or disruptive behavior at any Capitol building or compound; and parades, demonstrations, or pickets at a Capitol building.
They will be sentenced in September.
In the worst case of obstructing official proceedings, they face up to 20 years in prison.
They opted for a bench trial presided over by US District Judge Trevor McFadden, who was appointed by President Donald Trump.
While prosecutors said Kevin and Hunter intended to break into the Capitol along with the larger pro-Trump mob during the joint session of Congress, their defense attorneys argued the two were not there to disrupt the election process.
Kevin carried a large Confederate battle flag - which prosecutors described as a "symbol of violent opposition" - which he brought from his home in Delaware when he breached the complex.
He was captured in photos that were later widely circulated, leading to his arrest after what authorities say his son spoke to someone at work about being in the Capitol.
PHOTOS: The attack on the US Capitol on January 6th
Prosecutors said Hunter was one of the first people to illegally enter the Capitol following a pro-Trump rally near the White House earlier that day. He was seen in viral videos smashing a window with his hand to enter the building. Hunter faces three more charges of destroying government property.
Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman, praised by many for his efforts to keep rioters away from Vice President Mike Pence and the evacuating members of Congress, was a key witness at the Seefrieds' trial after meeting them both in the Capitol.
PHOTO: Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman confronts protesters who storm the Capitol after hearing a speech by President Trump on Jan. 6, 2021. (Ashley Gilbertson/VII/Redux)
Testifying in court Monday, Goodman described the clashes between the mob and police as "something straight out of the Middle Ages" and said after encountering Kevin Seefried in the Capitol, the latter tried to hit him with the end of his flagpole three or four times.
Kevin was "very angry and screaming," Goodman testified.
Hunter "was just disobeying orders," Goodman said.
While Goodman was in the Capitol during the riot, he was hit with bear spray and objects pelted by the crowd, including an apple that hit him in the head, he said.
Just before the Jan. 6 hearing, 3 rioters in the Capitol express their regret and plead for mercy
Goodman, who served in the Iraq war, said, "I've never seen anything like it."
He said he retired to makeshift triage to rinse his face but that the spray "had a pretty bad effect on me." He vomited several times before walking out of the Capitol again to continue helping his colleagues against the mob.
PHOTO: A mob of supporters of then-President Donald Trump fights with law enforcement officials at a door they broke down when they stormed the US Capitol building in Washington, D.C. January 6, 2021. (Leah Millis/Reuters, FILE)
He later returned to the house and faced Kevin carrying his battle flag. Goodman said Kevin repeatedly tried to hit him with the end of the flagpole and he heard people yelling, "Where are they counting the votes?" and "Where are the members?"
Goodman told the rioters to "come back" and "get out" as they approached him and he felt trapped, he testified. He said Kevin told him, "We are thousands, you are but one," adding, "We are ready for war."
Goodman told the court that he feared for his safety, particularly after noticing a tear on Kevin's face, which Goodman took to be synonymous with someone who had previously committed murder.
"I was just outnumbered," he testified.
PHOTO: Kevin Seefried carries a Confederate flag as he protests in the Capitol Rotunda on Jan. 6, 2021. (Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)
The defense worked to undermine Goodman's testimony, arguing that he may have "innocently misremembered" and was focusing on more violent rioters.
None of the Seefrieds are accused of assaulting the police.
However, prosecutors said that Goodman was no stranger to chaotic environments, and the Seefrieds corroborated his testimony during FBI interviews days after Jan. 6, when Kevin admitted waving his flag at Goodman.
Judge convicts Jan. 6 suspect - and his son - of taking Confederate flag to Capitol, originally appeared on abcnews.go.com
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