AP – A New York man pleaded guilty on Friday to stealing a badge and radio from a police officer who was brutally beaten as rioters pulled him into the mob that attacked the United States (US) Capitol over two years ago, court record show.
Thomas Sibick pleaded guilty to assault and theft charges in the attack on Metropolitan Police Officer Michael Fanone during the January 6, 2021, riot at the Capitol. US District Judge Amy Berman Jackson is scheduled to sentence Sibick on July 28. The judge allowed Sibick to remain free on bond until then.
Estimated sentencing guidelines call for Sibick to receive a prison sentence ranging from a low of two years and nine months to a high of nearly six years, according to his plea agreement.
Rioters kicked, punched, grabbed and shocked Fanone with a stun gun after pulling him away from other officers who were guarding a tunnel entrance on the Capitol’s Lower West Terrace.
Another rioter threatened to take Fanone’s gun and kill him.
Fanone’s body camera captured Sibick removing the officer’s badge and radio during the mob’s attack, according to a court filing accompanying his guilty plea.
Others in the crowd escorted Fanone back to the police line. Before FBI agents showed him the body camera video, Sibick initially denied assaulting Fanone and claimed that he tried in vain to pull the officer away from his attackers.
Sibick said he buried Fanone’s badge in his backyard after returning home to Buffalo, New York.