Hundreds of the people involved in the January 6th, 2021, attack on the capitol building in Washington have already been charged, tried, convicted and sentenced. One of the most recent, is a bloke called Zach Rehl, 37, who is the former president of the Philadelphia chapter of the Proud Boys, and who on Thursday, August 31st, was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for his role. It is the third longest prison term imposed on one of the insurrectionists. It is exceeded by the 18 year sentence handed down in May for Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes and the 17 year sentence for the Florida Proud Boys leader Joseph Biggs, also handed down on Thursday1.
The sentence Rehl received was half the minimum term recommended by federal sentencing guidelines, and sought by the prosecution. The judge, Timothy Kelly acknowledged that disparity as he announced his sentencing decision, explaining that while he found Rehl’s crimes should be punished as an act of terrorism — a factor that dramatically increased the possible prison time under sentencing guidelines — he did not believe that Rehl intended the type of “mass casualty” event typically associated with a terrorist act1. I am sure that will be of great comfort to the families of the police officers who died, most by their own hand, after the event2.
Rehl, reading from a prepared statement through his tears, described January 6th as a “despicable day”. He told the judge he fell “hook, line, sinker” for politicians [read Trump] spewing lies about the 2020 election, causing him to lose sight over what was truly important in life — his family. Who would have guessed that joining an insurrection to try to prevent certification of the result of an election could jeopardise his future with his family [sarcasm font]. He apologised to his wife, and their daughter, who was born shortly after his arrest in March 2021, and whom he has not had the chance to hold since he remains in prison. He said. “I’m done peddling lies for other people who don’t care about me”1. He can perhaps tell his daughter that at her 18thbirthday.
Rehl is just another gullible right-wing nut-job who has been used and discarded by Trump. The United States is replete with such gullible fools; those who will donate money to the Trump organisation, supposedly to pay for his legal bills, while he swans around the country in his own private Boeing 757 which is configured to seat 43 people and has a dining room, bathroom, shower, bedroom, guest room and galley, with fixtures are plated in 24 carat gold3.
These same people were gullible enough to believe Trump when he said ‘I am your voice’. You have to laugh.