Capitol Intruder Who Smoked Weed in Senator’s Office Gets 3.5-Year Prison Sentence

A man who participated in the storming of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, including smoking marijuana inside Senator Jeffrey Merkley’s office, has been sentenced to 3.5 years in prison. Brandon Craig Fellows, aged 29, from Schenectady, New York, received the sentence from U.S. District Judge Trevor N. McFadden, comprising 37 months for various charges related to the Capitol breach and an additional five months for contempt of court.

Following the 2020 election, a call to gather in Washington, D.C., was echoed by then-President Donald Trump, leading to a chaotic event on January 6, 2021. Despite claims of not causing harm, Fellows’ actions were deemed criminal, resulting in his arrest on January 16, 2021, by FBI agents in New York.

After a legal process, Fellows was convicted on multiple charges, including obstruction of an official proceeding and various misdemeanors related to entering and remaining in restricted areas of the Capitol, disruptive conduct, and disorderly behavior.

During the Capitol breach, Fellows disguised himself with a fake beard and knight’s helmet, carrying a “Trump 2020” flag and a trash can lid as a shield. He documented his actions on social media and was witnessed smoking marijuana inside Senator Merkley’s office.

The prosecution of this case involved multiple entities, including the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section, with support from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of New York.

Fellows’ sentencing is part of ongoing efforts by law enforcement to hold individuals accountable for their roles in the Capitol breach. Over 1,313 individuals have been charged across nearly all states for various crimes related to the incident, with ongoing investigations continuing to identify and prosecute those involved.


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