Prosecutors ask for Jan. 6 conspiracy figure Ray Epps to receive 6-month prison sentence

Epps was only charged with a misdemeanor due to multiple factors, including how he cooperated with law enforcement, prosecutors said.

Published: January 3, 2024 9:18am

Updated: January 3, 2024 10:09am

Federal prosecutors are asking the court to sentence Ray Epps, the defendant at the center of Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot conspiracies, to six months in prison. 

In a 29-page court filing Tuesday, prosecutors asked the court to sentence Epps to six months in prison, which they said is the "high end" of the applicable sentencing guidelines. Epps, a retired 62-year-old former Marine and former Arizona Oath Keeper leader, pleaded guilty in September to disorderly conduct in a restricted building, a misdemeanor, and agreed to pay $500 in restitution as part of a plea agreement.

"Although Epps engaged in felonious conduct during the riot on January 6, his case includes a variety of distinctive and compelling mitigating factors, which led the government to exercise its prosecutorial discretion and offer Epps a pre-indictment misdemeanor plea resolution," prosecutors wrote in Tuesday's filing. 

They cited how Epps turned himself in to the FBI two days after the Capitol riot as soon as he knew the agency was looking to identify him, how he cooperated with Congress and the FBI, including through several long voluntary interviews and how he tried to deescalate conflict on Jan. 6 at least 5 times, per the court document. 

Videos from Jan. 5 and 6, 2021 showed Epps urging people to "go to the Capitol," and because he was not charged until September 2023, he became the center of conspiracy theories proposing that he could have been a federal agent who encouraged the riot. 

Some conservatives speculated that Epps may have been an undercover FBI agent. He sued Fox News in July, alleging that the Justice Department would not have likely charged him if it were not for the network's coverage of him which brought political pressure to bring charges. The network filed to dismiss the case in August, according to The Washington Post

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