WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal prosecutors on Tuesday really helpful a six-month time period of imprisonment for a person on the middle of a right-wing conspiracy concept concerning the Jan. 6, 2021, riot on the U.S. Capitol — an assault that he has admitted to becoming a member of.

Ray Epps, who’s scheduled to be sentenced subsequent Tuesday, pleaded guilty in September to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct on restricted grounds.

Epps, a onetime Donald Trump supporter from Arizona, grew to become the main focus of a conspiracy concept that he was an undercover authorities agent who incited the Capitol assault. Proper-wing information shops amplified the conspiracy concept and drove him into hiding after the Jan. 6 riot.

Epps, who labored as a roofer after serving 4 years as infantry within the U.S. Marine Corps, has vehemently denied ever working for the FBI. Assistant U.S. Legal professional Michael Gordon mentioned throughout Epps’ plea listening to in September that he was not a confidential supply for the FBI “or some other legislation enforcement company.”

Epps, 62, filed a defamation lawsuit in opposition to Fox Information Channel final yr, saying the network was to blame for spreading the baseless claims that led to dying threats and bullet casings in his yard.

In movies shared broadly on social media and right-wing web sites, Epps is seen the day earlier than the riot saying, “Tomorrow, we have to go into the Capitol … peacefully.” On Jan. 6, video reveals him saying, “As quickly because the president is completed talking, we go to the Capitol.”

Epps has mentioned he left Capitol grounds when he noticed individuals scaling partitions and by no means really went contained in the constructing.

Prosecutors say Epps participated in a “a rugby scrum-like group effort” to push previous a line of cops.

“Even when Epps didn’t bodily contact legislation enforcement officers or go inside the constructing, he undoubtedly engaged in collective aggressive conduct,” they wrote in a court filing.

However additionally they famous that Epps turned himself in to the FBI two days after the riot after studying that brokers have been making an attempt to determine him. The false conspiracy concept about Epps not solely has harmed him “but in addition makes an attempt to undermine the integrity of the continuing and general federal prosecution,” prosecutors mentioned.

“Epps solely acted in furtherance of his personal misguided perception within the ‘lie’ that the 2020 presidential election had been ‘stolen,'” they wrote. “Nevertheless, because of the outrage directed at Epps on account of that false conspiracy concept, he has been pressured to promote his enterprise, transfer to a unique state, and stay reclusively.”

The cost to which Epps pleaded responsible is punishable by a most of 1 yr behind bars.

Epps served as an Arizona chapter chief for the Oath Keepers earlier than parting methods with the anti-government extremist group a couple of years earlier than the Jan. 6 assault.

Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes and different members have been convicted of seditious conspiracy within the Jan. 6 assault for what prosecutors mentioned was a weekslong plot to cease the switch of energy from Trump to Democrat Joe Biden. Rhodes was sentenced in Could to 18 years in prison.

Greater than 1,200 defendants have been charged with Capitol riot-related federal crimes. Over 900 of them have pleaded responsible or been convicted after trials determined by a decide or jury.

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