Prosecutors seek more than 7 years for Iowan who assaulted officer during Capitol riot

A Dallas County man who allegedly tried to take a police officer’s gun during the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol could face one of the longest sentences yet delivered to any Capitol riot defendant.

Prosecutors in a filing this week are recommending that Kyle Young, 38, of Redfield, be ordered to serve 86 months — more than seven years — when he is sentenced on Sept. 27 in Washington, D.C. Young pleaded guilty in May to a single charge of assaulting, resisting or impeding a police officer.

If the judge accepts the recommendation, he would go to prison for longer than all but a handful of other rioters so far. A former Marine and New York police officer who attacked police with a flagpole were sentenced earlier this month to 10 years in prison, while a Virginia police officer was sentenced to 87 months — one month more than Young.

Kyle Young, 38, of Redfield was arrested in April 2021 after prosecutors identified him as a member of a mob that dragged D.C. Metropolitan Police officer Michael Fanone into the crowd on the Capitol terrace during the riot. Fanone was beaten and shocked with a stun gun and suffered a heart attack as a result of the assault.

Young pleaded guilty in May to a single charge of assaulting, resisting or impeding a police officer.  

“Young’s protracted and repeated assaults against numerous police officers inside and directly outside the (lower west terrace) tunnel mark him as one of the most violent rioters who attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6,” the prosecutors said in their memorandum.

Violent assault or ‘briefly made contact’?

Young’s attorney characterizes his role in the attack differently, saying in court filings that Young “briefly made contact with the wrist of a member of law enforcement” in the “unruly” crowd. The defense is requesting a below-guideline sentence of no more than two years for Young.

Previously: First Iowan sentenced in January 6 riot at US Capitol gets 30 days in prison; son sentenced to four months

“While his action alone did not injure the officer, Mr. Young is aware and troubled by the fact that his action was contemporaneous with others who did inflict greater harm on the officer,” attorney Samuel Moore wrote. “Mr. Young lives with deep regret that he was there that day, let alone in contact with this officer.”

Young accused of multiple attacks on police

Fanone, who has since testified before Congress and given media interviews about his experience, told investigators that a rioter later identified as Young tried to take his service weapon out of its holster, shouting “Kill him with his own gun!” The charge to which Young pled guilty specified only that he grabbed and held Fanone’s wrist in the melee, and Monday’s filing does not repeat the claim that it was Young personally who tried to grab Fanone’s weapon. 

“Young’s restraint of Officer Fanone prevented the officer from protecting his service weapon at a time when the officer’s life was in danger” and enabled another rioter to steal Fanone’s badge and radio, according to the new filing.

Prosecutors also describe a range of other misconduct by Young during the pitched, hand-to-hand fighting that took place on the terrace. It was Young, they said, who provided another rioter a Taser and instructions how to use it. The rioter later shocked Fanone repeatedly in the back of the neck, prosecutors said.

They also charge that Young used a strobe light to try to blind officers; threw a heavy speaker toward a police line, injuring another rioter; and jabbed a line of officers using riot shields with a pole. After assaulting Fanone, prosecutors say, Young joined in the assault on another officer who had been temporarily blinded with bear spray.

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