Follow Us

Prosecutors seek enhanced sentence for ex-chief who wasn't violent, didn't enter Capitol on Jan. 6

Hostetter did not enter the Capitol building on Jan. 6, nor did he "personally engage in violence," prosecutors said, according to court documents. 

Published: December 3, 2023 10:39am

Prosecutors are asking a judge to sentence a former California police chief to more than 12 years in prison, beyond the sentencing guidelines, for his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot even though he did not participate in the violence.

Alan Hostetter, a 56-year-old retired La Habra police chief who became a yoga instructor and activist, was convicted in July on four charges connected to Jan. 6: two related to obstructing an official proceeding and two related to conduct on restricted grounds with a dangerous weapon.

Prosecutors said in a filing last week that the normal sentencing guidelines for Hostetter would be between nine years and 11 years, three months, but they are asking the court to sentence Hostetter to 12 years, seven months, followed by three years of supervised release and $2,000 in restitution due to what the government calls the "the gravity of Hostetter’s conspiratorial conduct." 

Hostetter did not enter the Capitol building on Jan. 6, nor did he "personally engage in violence," prosecutors said, according to court documents. 

Prosecutors said Hostetter's actions that warrant the enhanced sentence include how he allegedly prepared for Jan. 6 with Russell Taylor, a California man who pleaded guilty earlier this year for his actions during the riot.

While Hostetter was not convicted on charges related to transporting weapons, when attorneys explained reasons for the enhanced sentencing request, they cited how the court wrote in his verdict: "Mr. Hostetter proposed and agreed to transport weapons from California to Washington, D.C., on behalf of Mr. Taylor.  Mr. Hostetter actually transported those weapons knowing and intending that Mr. Taylor would carry those weapons on January 6." 

Prosecutors also argued that Hostetter's leadership role warrants the enhanced sentence and how a lengthy sentence would provide deterrence to future crimes. 

"Hostetter has shown himself to be a man eager to stoke the fires of revolution, and to assume the role of a leader of the revolution he fantasizes is coming," they wrote, later stating in the document: "Hostetter has never taken responsibility or expressed regret for his conduct on January 6, 2021. Hostetter has never walked away from his calls for war, revolution, and violence against political leaders."

Hostetter's sentencing hearing is scheduled for Dec. 7 in Washington, D.C., according to The Orange County Register, and as of Thursday, court records show that he had not filed a sentencing brief.

Follow Madeleine Hubbard on X or Instagram.