An Ohio man who claimed to believe the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol was “all Antifa” has pleaded guilty to storming the building.
Stephen Michael Ayres39, admitted on Wednesday to disorderly and disruptive behavior in a restricted building or compound on January 6. He admitted he traveled from Ohio to Washington, DC to attend donald trump‘s so-called “stop the steal” rally, at which the former president called on thousands of supporters to march to the Capitol to “demand” that Congress not ratify it Joe Bidens Election victory 2020.
Ayres did just that.
According to prosecutors, Ayres entered the Capitol through the doors of the Senate wing at around 2:51 p.m. after a makeshift barricade set up by Capitol police was breached by other rioters. He stayed in the building for about 10 minutes.
The next day, Ayres was featured in a video posted to YouTube, in which he and two other people were talking about January 6th.
The video captioned, “It was all Antifa breaking into the Capitol on 6/1/2021.”
“It’s not over yet, trust me,” said one man – not Ayres – on the video. “The purpose of today was to uncover [then-Vice President Mike Pence] as a traitor.”
“The American people will not allow this, especially after today,” said a woman in the video.
“Yup,” Ayres replied, adding that “fake news” media outlets don’t report exactly what happened at the Capitol, but rather that they “saw everything” and collected footage “all over the Capitol.”
Senior law enforcement officials said they “saw no evidence” that members of Antifa — a decentralized collection of activists who hold what they call “anti-fascist” views — or “fake” supporters of the former president on Jan. 6 have participated uprising.
Ayres had signaled his intentions in various Facebook posts prior to January 6.
“History is being made right before your eyes!” he wrote on Jan. 2, 2021. “When your grandchildren ask, ‘Where were you when ……….. happened?’ What will your answer be?”
Attached to this post was a picture of a poster that read: “6. January Washington, DC, President calls on us to return to Washington for a major protest on January 6th – ‘Be there, will be wild’.”
In a Jan. 3 post, Ayres blamed the news media, social media, Democrats, “FISA courts,” the chief justice John RobertsBiden and Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) of “treason.”
“Everybody’s getting ‘We The People!’ notified,” he wrote.
Ayres was side-charged in February 2021 Matthew Pernawho stormed the Capitol and stayed in it for about 20 minutes on January 6, taking a video on his phone and singing with the crowd.
Perna pleaded guilty in December to obstruction of Congress, a felony technically punishable by up to 20 years in prison, and three related misdemeanor charges. He committed suicide in late February, weeks before he was due to be sentenced.
US District Judge John Bates Ayres said he knew the situation was “particularly difficult because of what happened to her co-defendant.”
“I offer you my condolences,” said the judge, a George W Bush Officer added.
“Thank you, Your Honor,” Ayres said.
The misconduct offense of which Ayres has pleaded guilty carries a possible one-year prison sentence, but the plea agreement estimates a recommended range of 0 to 6 months based on Ayres’ lack of a criminal record and the fact that he is not charged with involvement in physical violence.
Bates set Ayres’ sentencing for September 13.
[Images via FBI court filing.]
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https://lawandcrime.com/u-s-capitol-breach/ohio-man-who-said-antifa-was-responsible-for-jan-6-pleads-guilty-to-storming-the-capitol/ Stephen Ayres pleads guilty to violating the Capitol on January 6th