Michigan man sentenced to 5 years in prison after posting about being at the Jan. 6 riot on Facebook

‘Was proudest day of my life lol,’ the Southgate man wrote on Facebook, adding that he has ‘absolutely no remorse’

Sep 16, 2022 at 3:51 pm
click to enlarge Anthony Robert Williams, 47, of Southgate posted photos of himself at the Jan. 6 riot online. - Courtesy of the FBI
Courtesy of the FBI
Anthony Robert Williams, 47, of Southgate posted photos of himself at the Jan. 6 riot online.

Another Michigan man has been sentenced to prison for his involvement in the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, this time after posting about it on Facebook.

Anthony Robert Williams, 47, of Southgate, was sentenced to five years in federal prison, Chief U.S. District judge Beryl Howell ruled Friday.

According to the FBI, Williams posted photos of himself at the riot on social media and also bragged about his role in the attack.

“Was proudest day of my life lol felt like the founding fathers were smiling down on us in that room, and I guarantee my dad and gramps, both vets, would be proud,” Williams wrote on Facebook three days later.

According to prosecutors, Williams also stole water bottles the Capitol Police used for decontamination in case of chemical irritants, and filmed himself saying, “We took this fucking building,” and “Desperate times, desperate measures … Trump 2020 motherfucker.”

Even after he was arrested in Detroit on March 26, 2021, he doubled down on social media.

“I was in the Capitol and have absolutely no remorse or fear in saying or doing it,” he wrote.

Williams’s lack of remorse led to his 5-year prison sentence due to a factor known as specific deterrence, a legal term for punishment meant to prevent the defendant from committing the same crime again, Law & Crime notes.

“Williams’s own statements in social media that he had no remorse demonstrates that his sentence must be sufficient to provide specific deterrence from committing future crimes,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony L. Franks wrote.

William’s attorney said his client changed his tune before the trial, writing that he said, “Looking back on it now, I do have remorse that people were injured, that there was loss of life, that some of the property was destroyed, and about how it created further divisions in our country between the parties,” according to the defense memo.

But the prosecution wasn’t buying it.

“That show of remorse came only when Williams, faced with overwhelming evidence of his guilt, had no choice but to confess during his trial testimony some of his criminal conduct on January 6,” the prosecutor said, adding, “this Court should give it little weight now.”

According to the FBI, Williams was “among the first” to storm the U.S. Capitol and was one of the last to leave the rotunda. He called the attack “Operation Swamp Storm.”

Williams was also ordered to pay $7,000 and will be supervised for three years following his release, MLive reports.

Sixteen people from Michigan have been arrested for their roles in Jan. 6, with Williams being the seventh to be sentenced. More than 870 people have been arrested so far.

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