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Capitol riot trial opens for Cowboys for Trump founder


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capitol-riot-trial-opens-for-cowboys-for-trump-founder-couy-griffin
New York Post/AP

Mar. 22 0222

WASHINGTON — An elected official from New Mexico went to trial with a judge — not a jury — set to decide if he is guilty of charges that he illegally entered the U.S. Capitol grounds on the day a pro-Trump mob disrupted the certification of Joe Biden’s presidential election victory.

U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden is scheduled to hear attorneys’ closing arguments Tuesday for the case against Otero County Commissioner Couy Griffin, whose trial in Washington, D.C., is the second among the hundreds of people charged with federal crimes related to the Jan. 6, 2021, siege.

The judge heard testimony Monday from three government witnesses. Griffin’s lawyer said he doesn’t plan to call any defense witnesses.

The case against Griffin is unlike most of the Capitol riot prosecutions. He is one of the few riot defendants who isn’t accused of entering the Capitol or engaging in any violent or destructive behavior. He claims he has been selectively prosecuted for his political views.

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Mar. 22 2022

New Mexico local elected official and "Cowboys for Trump" founder Couy Griffin spoke out to the media Monday evening after exiting the first day of his bench trial on two misdemeanor charges for January 6.

He says he believes the trial is going well and tells fellow January 6 defendants to "hold the line."

"We still have a justice system in America today. We still have fair laws, so we'll continue to trust in that."

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Official Couy Griffin found guilty of illegally entering Capitol grounds Jan. 6

Mar. 22 2022

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McFadden, an appointee of President Donald Trump, said there was ample evidence that Griffin knew he was in a restricted area and didn’t leave. Griffin crossed over three walls, needing help from others or a ladder to get over them, the judge noted.

“All of this would suggest to a normal person that perhaps you should not be entering the area,” McFadden said from the bench.

But the judge said prosecutors didn’t meet their burden to prove that Griffin engaged in disorderly conduct.

“Arguably, he was trying to calm people down, not rile them up,” he said.

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Griffin is scheduled to be sentenced on June 17.

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Mar. 22 2022

 

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