4 weeks ago

Former Republican mayoral candidate gets 10 days in prison in Jan. 6 case

WASHINGTON — A former Republican candidate who lost his race for mayor in Connecticut last year was sentenced Wednesday to 10 days of incarceration for his role in the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Gino DiGiovanni Jr. admitted he entered the Capitol after he was confronted by NBC Connecticut in October 2022 after he was identified by online "sedition hunters" who have aided hundreds of cases against Capitol rioters. “I wouldn’t want to be arrested for it,” DiGiovanni said at the time. “I guess hindsight is 20/20.”

DiGiovanni was arrested in August 2023, reached a plea agreement last year and pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor in January.

Prosecutors cited NBC Connecticut's interview with DiGiovanni in seeking a sentence of 30 days behind bars, saying it was clear that DiGiovanni was not remorseful when shown the evidence.

"When DiGiovanni was confronted with pictures of himself inside the Capitol by a member of the press in 2022, DiGiovanni acknowledged his presence in the Capitol on January 6 but did not express remorse for his part in the riot at the Capitol, even as a sitting elected official at the time of the interview," prosecutors wrote.

"Thirty days of incarceration for that conviction is amply warranted here: DiGiovanni entered the United States Capitol building despite obvious signs that he should not (including OC-spray in the air, verbal attacks hurled at police, and blaring alarms); he remained in the Capitol for over twenty minutes and then stayed even longer on Capitol Grounds to celebrate the mob’s breach of the Capitol building; and he has failed express real remorse or recognition of the import of his actions from that day," they wrote.

At the hearing on Wednesday before Chief Judge James E. Boasberg, Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Boyles played a video that showed DiGiovanni at the chaotic scene on the west front of the U.S. Capitol, as well as standing near a window by the Senate side doors where the mob first breached the building. "This isn't some ordinary trespass," she said, highlighting what DiGiovanni was seeing and hearing when he made the choice to enter the building.

A defense attorney said that DiGiovanni's business had suffered because of the charges and asked the judge to show leniency.

"When looking through a lens of Mr. DiGiovanni’s good deeds throughout his entire life, it is evident that they outweigh this one bad one. In addition to serving on the Derby Board of Aldermen/women and the Derby Planning and Zoning Commission, Mr. DiGiovanni ran as Republican candidate for mayor in the fall of 2022," his attorney wrote. "It is safe to say that this became very difficult for Mr. DiGiovanni, due to the negative impact from this case. Mr. DiGiovanni has faced and continues to face ridicule, as well as many other repercussions from that one bad deed on January 6th, 2021."

In the three years since Jan. 6, prosecutors have charged over 1,387 Capitol attack defendants and secured more than 984 convictions and more than 520 sentences of incarceration ranging from a few days behind bars to 22 years in federal prison. There are about 15 defendants being held in pretrial custody at the order of a federal judge.

This article was originally published on NBCNews.com

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