Judge signals plea offers coming in Capitol riot inquiry as authorities focus on violent suspects

A federal judge signaled Thursday that plea agreements were forthcoming for some of the hundreds accused in the government’s far-reaching investigation into the deadly Capitol riot on Jan. 6.

In a hearing involving three Missouri defendants charged with illegal entry and disorderly conduct, U.S. District Judge Dabney Friedrich said she expected “plea offers would be extended in the near future” as part of the larger inquiry.

U.S. Attorney Brenda Johnson did not dispute the judge’s assessment, as the government has focused much of its attention on the most violent offenders and larger groups suspected to have coordinated their roles in the siege.

The FBI released videos and photos of the attack Jan. 6 on the U.S. Capitol. (Photo: @rawsmedia via Storyful)

Prosecutors acknowledged last week that they were pursuing a broad conspiracy involving “a large number of participants.” This week, the government asserted that a leader of the paramilitary group known as the Oath Keepers coordinated with members of at least two other extremist sects – the Proud Boys and Three Percenters – before the Capitol attack.

The disclosure, contained in a court filing seeking the continued detention of Florida Oath Keeper leader Kelly Meggs marked the first time prosecutors presented evidence of wider coordination among extremist groups.

The FBI appealed for public help in pursuit of 10 suspects involved in some of the most brutal assaults on police officers.

The FBI appeal, which included graphic video clips of suspects wielding clubs, flagpoles, broken furniture and chemical sprays, produced a wave of tips. The search for the 10 continues.

The FBI has released surveillance video of the person who placed two pipe bombs in Washington, DC the night before rioters breached the US Capitol building. The bombs did not explode. The FBI is asking for help in the search for the suspect. (March 10)

AP Domestic

At least 65 suspects in more than 400 cases filed have been charged with assaulting officers.

The three Missouri defendants in Thursday’s hearing are accused of entering the Capitol but weren’t charged with assault or weapons possession.

In an interview with the FBI, one of the suspects, Stephen Quick, said he was “ashamed” of his conduct, according to court documents.

Dee Wampler, a Springfield, Missouri, attorney representing all three defendants, told the judge he expected a relatively quick resolution of the case.

“I don’t anticipate a trial,” Wampler said.

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