Idaho Woman Gets Jail Time For Raiding Capitol On Jan. 6th
Pam Hemphill, a 69-year old woman from Idaho, has been sentenced to two months behind bars for her involvement in the January 6th Insurrection on the U.S. Capitol Building.
Hemphill received attention during the Insurrection when she was seen being walked down the sets at the Capitol after breaching the building, and encouraging others in attendance to do the same.
According to her own Facebook and her own words to KTVB, Pam Hemphill flew from Idaho to Washington D.C. on January 5th in order to support former President Donald Trump's effort to over turn the 2020 presidential election results, despite no evidence to support the claim.
According to Law & Crime, she had pushed through police lines three separate times while the crowd outside of the U.S. Capitol continued getting increasingly violent. While there, she was also encouraging other rioters to force their way inside the building, and later on she was seen inside the Rotunda.
In addition to all of that, Prosecutors say that when Police offered to assist her after an apparent injury, Hemphill exaggerated injuries to distract officers from more violent protestors and allow them further access into the Building.
Back in January of this year, Hemphill pleaded guilty to one count of demonstrating, picketing, or parading in a Capitol building, which is a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail, a fine up to $5,000, and up to five years of probation.
According to KTVB, she had reportedly requested a sentence of only probation or home confinement. Prosecutors wanted a sentence of 60 days in jail, three years of probation, and 60 hours of community service.
At her sentencing hearing this week, prosecutors said that Hemphill tried to present herself as a frail old woman who had been overwhelmed by the crowed and was then injured. She didn't display herself as the agitator that she was proven to be.
During the hearing, Prosecutor Katherine Nielsen played video that appeared to show Hemphill interacting with Police Officers who were with her attempting to give her assistance.
She was heard telling an officer, "I had to get out of that crowd. I had surgery." She then tried to claim she was a journalist while the Police Officer helped her to take refuge and safety near a gate.
However, Hemphill did not take any refuse. Instead, a video appeared to show her encouraging the crowd before her to press forward into the Capitol Building.
"It's your house, whose house does it belong to?" She was heard saying.
This was a continued theme for Hemphill on the 6th, who several times faked injuries to allow rioters to make their way forward. Encouraging them all the while.
Prosecutor Nielsen was sure to point out all of these examples during the hearing.
Hemphill's story only gets weirder from there. As it turns out, the Department of Justice points out January 6th wasn't her first time storming a government building. Prosecutors say that in August of 2020, Hemphill was part of a group that stormed the Idaho Statehouse--even shattering a door in the process--while they were protesting COVID-19 restrictions.
That specific protest was led by anti-government militant Ammon Bundy, who is no stranger to standoffs with the federal government.
Speaking at her sentencing hearing this week, Hemphill stated that she "fully" regretted her actions on the 6th. She said, "I regret everything I did and said at that Capitol. Not to excuse my actions, [but] my intentions were to record what was going on, not to be a part of it. It was as if I was at a football game cheering on the team from the stands and then the fans went on to the field."
Senior U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth wasted no time at the hearing, saying that she will spend time behind bars and would not get her wish of only probation.
According to Idaho News 6, Lamberth told the court, "As tempting as it is to be lenient in this kind of situation, what I have discerned is it is such a serious offense because it's such a serious event in the history of our country. I have to agree with the government's recommendation in this case. I believe that there has to be a penalty when there is a serious offense like this."
Lambert was appointed to the court by former President Ronald Reagan. Lamberth went on to say that while he believed Hemphill may be sincere in her apology, he did not want a repeat of what happened with Anna Morgan-Lloyd, a January 6th defendant who appeared on Fox News appearing to walk back the remorse she expressed one day prior in Lamberth's court.
In addition to the 60 days Hemphill will spend behind bars, she will spend three years on supervised release. She will also have to pay $500 in restitution toward the estimated $2.7 million in damages that day at the Capitol.
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