A New Jersey gym owner and former MMA fighter who punched a police officer during the January 6th attack on the Capitol was sentenced to 41 months in prison on Wednesday, becoming the first rioter sentenced for violence against the police during the insurrection.
Scott Fairlamb pleaded guilty in August to assaulting a police officer and obstructing an official proceeding. He has been in jail since he was arrested in late January and will get credit for the time he has already spent behind bars. Fairlamb was also the first riot defendant to plead guilty to assault.
Fairlamb’s sentence will likely set an early precedent for how the rioters charged with violence may be punished, ushering in a new phase of the January 6th cases, which so far have had only nonviolent defendants sentenced largely to no jail time. “It’s such a serious offense … an affront to society and to the law, to have the Capitol overrun and the function of government stopped,” said Judge Royce Lamberth, noting that the assault had struck “in the heart of our democracy.”
Former MMA fighter Scott Fairlamb sentenced to 41 months for assault on police at US Capitol riot
After sentencing, his attorney threw shade at conservative media, but did not address Trump pic.twitter.com/bpKox7cA8m
— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) November 11, 2021
At his sentencing on Wednesday, Fairlamb said he had disappointed his family, including his father, who was a veteran, and noted that since his arrest he has not spoken to his brother who is a Secret Service agent, “out of respect for his position and our government.”
“Had you gone to trial, I don’t think there’s any jury that could have acquitted you or would have acquitted you,” Judge Lamberth told Fairlamb as he announced his sentence, according to Politico. “You couldn’t have beat this.”