The longest prison sentence given to a Jan. 6 Capitol riot participant came Monday when Guy Reffitt was sentenced to over seven years, USA Today reports. Legal experts believe more multi-year sentences will be given as rioters with more severe charges face sentencing. Reffitt was charged with obstructing an official proceeding and transporting a firearm supporting civil disorder; he participated with a gun holstered to his waist and led rioters attacking police officers and threatened House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. So far, in all 14 cases where rioters were given more than a year-long sentence. Many suspects with pending cases face charges of seditious conspiracy, including members of far-right groups Oath Keepers and Proud Boys. Some of these charges carry a minimum sentence of 20 years.
On May 11, prosecutors filed a court document detailing the fates of 171 Jan. 6 participants. Some 99 defendants were not given jail time but were punished with home detention, probation, community service, or restitution; 72 defendants were given jail time. Most were sentenced to less than a couple of months, but 14 were given over a year. Most of the harsher sentences went to people who assaulted police, brought weapons to the riot, or threatened politicians. Some are critical of the number of defendants being given little to no jail time. Many of them were charged with misdemeanors such as parading inside the Capitol. Critics believe anyone participating should be given harsh sentences to ward off future attacks.