Story at a glance

  • Tarrio received a 155-day sentence for his role in the BLM banner burning and for transporting unloaded high capacity magazines into Washington, D.C.
  • He pleaded guilty in July to destruction of property and attempted possession of a large-capacity ammunition feeding device, per the AP.
  • “Mr. Tarrio has clearly — intentionally and proudly — crossed the line from peaceful protest and assembly to dangerous and potentially violent criminal conduct,” the judge said.

Proud Boys leader Henry “Enrique” Tarrio received a sentence of more than five months for his role in burning a Black Lives Matter banner stolen from a historically Black church in Washington, D.C., and for transporting high-capacity firearm magazines into the district days before the Jan.6 insurrection. 

Tarrio told the court his actions were wrong and apologized, calling them “a grave mistake,” in a virtual hearing, The Associated Press (AP) reported

Authorities arrested the outspoken leader of the far-right group, often self-described as Western chauvinists, two days before the Jan. 6 riots for his role in a separate rally in D.C. in December. During the December rally, the Black Lives Matter banner was stolen from Asbury United Methodist Church in downtown Washington. 


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Rev. Ianther Mills, senior pastor of the church, described to the judge the flag’s burning as an “act of intimidation.” 

“His careless act of violence and hatred, targeted at a congregation of individuals with a lived history of social and racial injustice, had the presumably desired effect,” she said, according to the AP. “Asbury was forced to reckon with the very tangible evidence that we continue to live in a world where people radicalize hate based upon race and skin color.”

Tarrio’s Jan. 4 arrest, due to an outstanding warrant for vandalizing the church’s banner, led to the discovery of two unloaded magazines inscribed with the Proud Boys logo — he pleaded guilty in July to destruction of property and attempted possession of a large-capacity ammunition feeding device, per the AP. 


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Superior Court Judge Harold Cushenberry criticized Tarrio’s past assertion that he was unaware of the banner’s origins, given video evidence contradicting this position

“Mr. Tarrio has clearly — intentionally and proudly — crossed the line from peaceful protest and assembly to dangerous and potentially violent criminal conduct,” the judge said.

Cushenberry’s sentence exceeded the three months prosecutors originally pursued, arguing Tarrio "did not credibly express genuine remorse", handing him a total sentence of 155 days, NBC News reported


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Published on Aug 24, 2021