Published on: Monday, March 1, 2021

When members of the Oath Keepers militia stormed the U.S. Capitol Building – dressed in tactical gear and moving in a military "stack" formation – their aim, the FBI says, was to stop the government from conducting a peaceful transition of power. Now, that same government will pay to defend many of them against the charges they face – with a total cost of their court cases costing millions of taxpayers dollars (article available here).

More than 200 people now face local and federal charges in connection with the Capitol riot. The charges range in severity from parading in a Capitol building, a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of six months in prison, to assault on a federal law enforcement officer with a deadly weapon, which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years behind bars.

Analysis of cases currently filed in connection with the Capitol riot found more than 60 defendants who have already been granted representation either through the federal public defender's office or private counsel appointed through the Criminal Justice Act.