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Capitol rioter jailed for attack on police

The man who pepper-sprayed police officers during the US Capitol riots in 2021 has been sentenced to 80 months in prison.

January 28, 2023
By Sarah N. Lynch
28 January 2023

The man who carried out a pepper-spray attack on a US Capitol Police officer who died the day after the January 6, 2021, riot has been sentenced to 80 months in prison with credit for time already served in pre-trial detention.

Julian Khater, 32, who admitted in a guilty plea he had used the pepper spray against Officer Brian Sicknick and two other officers, told US District Judge Thomas Hogan rash actions that day were not in his nature, and he wishes he could take them back.

“I’ve taken every change I possibly could to better myself as a person,” Khater said. “What happened on Jan. 6 – there are no words for it … I wish I could take it back.”

Sicknick died of a stroke the next day. Although the medical examiner, Francisco J. Diaz, later attributed his death to natural causes, he told the Washington Post he believed “all that transpired” on January 6, 2021, played a role in his death.

Thousands of Donald Trump’s supporters stormed the Capitol that day in an attempt to overturn his election loss.

George Tanios, 41, of Morgantown, West Virginia, who travelled to Washington with Khater and supplied the chemical agent Khater used, pleaded guilty last year to lesser misdemeanour charges of disorderly conduct on restricted grounds.

His sentencing remains ongoing in the federal courthouse in Washington. Both the prosecution and his defence attorneys are seeking credit for the five-plus months he served in pre-trial detention.

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