Jan. 6 rioter who was a Princeton sophomore sentenced to prison for role in attack


WASHINGTON — A then-Princeton University student who yelled “drag them out” while he joined rioters trying to storm the Capitol was sentenced to two months in federal prison on Wednesday, according to court records.

Larry Giberson pleaded guilty to a felony over the summer, admitting that he obstructed, impeded, or interfered with law enforcement officers in the lawful performance of their official duties. Giberson was a sophomore during the Jan. 6 attack, when he “participated in coordinated pushing and pulling against the police,” according to a government sentencing memo and at one point even chanted “drag them out!” as rioters assaulted officers.

The government sought 11 months of incarceration for Giberson, who prosecutors say drove to Washington with his mother. The political science major who specialized in “American ideas and institutions” told FBI special agents he wanted to be at the Capitol to “support the parties that were making decisions regarding the certification of the electoral college, and that he was there to encourage what he believed to be the ‘correct’ certification.”

Larry Giberson, left, at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (USDCDC)Larry Giberson, left, at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (USDCDC)

Larry Giberson, left, at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (USDCDC)

Giberson told the FBI that he “saw the fear” in former Officer Michael Fanone’s eyes as he was dragged away by the mob. “That man believed he was going to die,” Giberson said.

The government said that while Giberson “is a young man,” that he “is evidently capable of appreciating the implications of the January 6 attack on the Capitol and of his participation in that attack, having recently graduated college and earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science.”

His defense attorney said Giberson “studied the issues surrounding the 2020 [election] and concluded that state actors had interfered with the electoral process in unconstitutional ways.”

Giberson’s mother said the 2020 election for her son was like watching his favorite baseball team on a World Series run. “You get caught up in the hype and excitement and you want to be at that winning game. I feel Larry wanted to be a part of something that he was passionate about, I know he had no intent to be caught up with the wrong crowd,” she wrote.

The Associated Press reported that Giberson said in court on Wednesday that he was ashamed of his “careless and thoughtless actions” at the Capitol, and the U.S. District Court Judge Carl Nichols said he believed Giberson was genuinely remorseful.

More than 1,100 people have been charged in connection with the Jan. 6 attack, and more than 400 have been sentenced to periods of incarceration.

This article was originally published on NBCNews.com



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