Federal prosecutors ask for 15-and-a-half year sentence for January 6 Capitol rioter from Maine

Kyle Fitzsimons stands convicted of 11 counts, committed five assaults on law enforcement officers
Saturday Morning Maine
Published: May. 27, 2023 at 5:10 AM EDT
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Maine (WMTW) - Federal prosecutors want Kyle Fitzsimons to spend 15-and-a-half years in prison for violently participating in the January 6, 2021, riot at the U.S Capitol in what would be one of the longest sentences to date stemming from the event.

Fitzsimons, 39, a butcher who lived in Lebanon, Maine, with his wife and young daughter, was the first of seven Maine residents to be arrested and criminally charged for taking part in the riot that derailed Congress’ certification of the 2020 election results and sought to block the peaceful transfer of power from former President Donald Trump to President Joe Biden.

In a 46-page sentencing memorandum filed in Washington federal court on Friday, prosecutors requested a 188-month sentence and noted Fitzsimons committed five assaults on law enforcement officers during the melee at the West Terrace entrance to the Capitol, including inflicting a career-ending shoulder injury on former Capitol Police Sergeant Aquilino Gonell.

“I’m asking you for the maximum years in prison to deter him and others from repeating this crime,” Gonell wrote the court in a letter submitted with the government’s sentencing memorandum. “Mr. Fitzsimons should receive such sentence for trying to violently overturn U.S. democracy.”

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Gordon and Douglas Brasher cited Fitzsimons’ “utter lack of remorse, his efforts to profit from his crime, and the urgent need to deter others from engaging in political violence.”

The prosecutors wrote, “The need to deter others is especially strong in cases involving domestic terrorism, which the breach of the Capitol certainly was.”

They pointed to $26,892 Fitzsimons’ mother raised online “for his benefit” with “an appeal to donors that falsely characterizes Fitzsimons as a mere rallygoer and ‘J6 Patriot’ who has experienced ‘egregious violations of due process rights.’”

Fitzsimons has been jailed for two years and four months since his February 2021 arrest.

Prosecutors wrote, “It is abundantly clear that he sees nothing wrong with his actions at the Capitol on January 6 and in fact sees himself as a victim.”

Last September, following a week-long trial without a jury, at Fitzsimons’ request, U.S. District Judge Rudolph Contreras found Fitzsimons guilty of all 11 counts against him, including seven felonies.

Contreras has scheduled Fitzsimons’ sentencing hearing for June 13.

More than 1,000 individuals have been arrested for the Capitol riot, and a majority of them have pleaded guilty, while at least 78 have been convicted at trial, according to the office of the U.S. Attorney for Washington, D.C., which is handling all of the cases.