Trial Begins for a Maine Man Facing Charges for the Capitol Riots
Kyle Fitzsimons, who donned his butcher's coat before heading to the January 6th Capitol riots, goes on trial this week.
How Many People Were Arrested for the Riots?
Many images emerged after the riots were over, including one that showed Fitzsimons' bloodied face. He was one of a large group of people who walked from President Trump's speech outside the White House to the Capitol building, as a joint session of Congress was preparing to certify Joe Biden's electoral vote win. More than 860 people have been arrested in nearly all 50 states and the District of Columbia for their alleged participation in the insurrection.
What Was Fitzsimon's Alleged Participation?
Fitzsimons made a detour to his vehicle after the speech, where he put on the butcher's coat he wore for his job as a meat cutter and grabbed an unstrung bow. He would later tell authorities the fact that it was not strung was meant to demonstrate his peaceful participation.
In pictures and videos that followed the storm on the Capitol building, Fitzsimons can be seen with a stream of blood running down his face. Investigators said that he was hit by a policeman's baton, after which he allegedly charged the line of officers who were trying to keep the mob out of the building. Fitzsimons says he got swept up in the crowd and then went into self-preservation mode. He was the first Maine resident to be arrested in connection with the incident.
What Charges Does He Face?
On Tuesday, August 16th, he will become the first Maine resident to stand trial for the Capitol riots. According to the United States Attorney's Office, District of Columbia, Fitzsimons faces multiple charges, 6 of which are felonies, including:
- Civil Disorder
- Obstruction of an Official Proceeding
- Inflicting Bodily Injury on Certain Officers
- Entering and Remaining in a Restricted Building or Grounds
- Disorderly and Disruptive Conduct in a Restricted Building or Grounds
- Engaging in Physical Violence in a Restricted Building or Grounds
- Disorderly Conduct in a Capitol Building
- Act of Physical Violence in the Capitol Grounds or Buildings
Fitzsimons has waived a jury trial so his case will be decided by Judge Rudolph Contreras, who previously denied his request for a change of venue.