Jan. 6 Rioter Sentenced for Assaulting Officer

Albuquerque Cosper Head, a Tennessee man who admitted to assaulting Metropolitan Police Dept. officer Michael Fanone during the Jan. 6 US Capitol riots, was sentenced Thursday to seven years and six months in prison, six months shy of the statutory maximum sentence.

Jan. 6 Rioter Sentenced for Assaulting Officer
Image credit: NBC

Facts

  • Albuquerque Cosper Head, a Tennessee man who admitted to assaulting Metropolitan Police Dept. officer Michael Fanone during the Jan. 6 US Capitol riots, was sentenced Thursday to seven years and six months in prison, six months shy of the statutory maximum sentence.
  • Prosecutors described how Head grabbed Fanone and yelled “I’ve got one!” before dragging the officer into a crowd that beat and shocked him with a stun gun. Fanone testified the attack gave him a heart attack and a traumatic brain injury that cost him his career.
  • Head, who was arrested in April and pleaded guilty in May, admitted he went to the Capitol after hearing then-Pres. Donald Trump’s speech on the Ellipse. His attorneys classified his actions as “another bad decision” in their pre-sentencing filing, which asked for 60 months in prison.
  • US district court Judge Amy Berman Jackson condemned Head’s attitude during the attack, saying, “He was your pray … he was your trophy," adding that, “The dark shadow of tyranny" continues to loom two years after the riot.
  • Others have been charged for Fanone's assault, with Jackson last month sentencing Kyle Young to seven years and two months in prison for grabbing Fanone by the wrists, and Daniel “D.J.” Rodriguez who is awaiting his Feb. 2023 trial for shooting Fanone with the stun gun.
  • Around 900 people have been charged with federal crimes related to Jan. 6, with over 430 of them pleading guilty and around 20 sentenced for assaulting police.

Sources: Independent, FOX News, CBS, and Guardian.

Narratives

  • Democratic narrative, as provided by NBC. Head had several opportunities to be a peaceful protester and avoid taking part in the violence, but he’s seen on video assaulting Fanone. Sentencing him to a near-max term will hopefully send a message to future election deniers that things like this can never happen again and that there will be serious consequences for violent actions.
  • Pro-Trump narrative, as provided by Federalist. Head's actions may have been inexcusable, but the Democrats are waging war on dissent, and that extends beyond Trump to his supporters who have serious questions about the integrity of the 2020 election. Just like authoritarian countries such as China, they've attempted to silence them by going after their livelihoods and even prosecuting them. They're not just going after one man for assault, but an entire political faction.

Predictions