WASHINGTON — A former high-ranking official for the Proud Boys who cooperated with federal authorities in a seditious conspiracy case against other members of the far-right organization was sentenced to 40 months in prison on Tuesday for his role in the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Charles Donohoe, who the government described as “a trusted lieutenant” on former Proud Boys chairman Enrique Tarrio’s “leadership team,” pleaded guilty to conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding as well as to assaulting, resisting, or impeding officers, including by throwing two water bottles at police while they were under assault by the mob. Authorities also said that Donohoe handled a stolen police shield on the grounds of the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Donohue, who is no longer affiliated with the Proud Boys, has been held in federal prison since his arrest in March 2021, so the sentence is nearly the equivalent of time served. Several paragraphs describing Donohue’s cooperation with the government were redacted from public filings in the case.

“Functionally, you’re going to be leaving pretty soon,” Judge Timothy Kelly told Donohoe on Tuesday, praising him for how he conducted himself since he was arrested, but noting the seriousness of the underlying crime.

Prosecutors said in a sentencing memo that Donohue was aware at least two days before the Capitol attack that members of the Proud Boys “were discussing the possibility of storming the US Capitol,” they wrote.

“Donohoe believed that storming the US Capitol would achieve the group’s goal of stopping the government from carrying out the transfer of presidential power,” prosecutors wrote.

Tarrio was sentenced in September to 22 years in federal prison, the longest sentence given to any Jan. 6 defendant to date. His codefendants included Joe Biggs, who was sentenced to 17 years, while Zachary Rehl was sentenced to 15 years and Ethan Nordean was sentenced to 18 years. Proud Boy Dominic Pezzola, the fifth defendant in the case, was found not guilty of the top charge of seditious conspiracy but guilty of other charges; he was sentenced to 10 years.

Donohue’s lawyers wrote their client “joined the Proud Boys in 2018, after watching a documentary on YouTube and seeing a video of Antifa smashing a Berkeley United States Marine Corps window in 2017.” Donohue eventually served as president of a local chapter in North Carolina.

“After Mr. Donohoe decided to plead guilty and cooperate with the Government, the Proud Boys permanently banned him from their organization,” his attorneys wrote. “However, when Mr. Donohoe made the decision to accept responsibility for his actions, he did so with the intent of leaving the Proud Boys. He has not regretted breaking ties with the Proud Boy organization. It is his desire to move forward in his life in a positive manner and focus on his family, especially his young son.” 

Federal prosecutors wrote that Donohue “served to organize and keep the men in line in the immediate aftermath” of Tarrio’s arrest on separate charges just ahead of the Jan. 6 attack by “nuking” their original organizing chats and “creating a new encrypted chat from which the group could organize its activities.”

“Donohoe also served a key role on the ground on January 6— communicating and organizing others. During the riot, he communicated the conditions on the ground back to … leadership, including a real-time video report at approximately 12:56 p.m. that the men had ‘stormed the Capitol building.’ Once on Capitol grounds, Donohoe joined in the group’s efforts to push forward by throwing two water bottles at a line of officers,” prosecutors wrote. “And he joined other Proud Boys who had marched to the Capitol as they reassembled for a final, fateful push toward the Capitol building. After the attack, Donohoe celebrated with the other participants in the conspiracy, declaring in messages that January 6 made him ‘feel like a complete warrior’ and he celebrated that ‘We stormed the capitol unarmed […] And we took it over unarmed.'”

Donohue served as a Marine for four years and did two deployments in Iraq. He then served as a defense contractor overseas, including in Afghanistan.

More than 1,200 people have been arrested in connection with the Jan. 6 attack, and more than 450 have been sentenced to periods of incarceration. Online sleuths say that about 1,000 other Jan. 6 participants have been identified but not yet arrested.

Source: | This article originally belongs to Nbcnews.com

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