Micajah Joel Jackson to strike plea deal in Capitol Riot

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An Arizona resident who faces federal charges related to the U.S. Capitol Riot has been offered a plea deal and accepted a plea hearing next month, his lawyer told a federal judge on Wednesday .

Phoenix resident and military veteran Micajah Joel Jackson, 25, faces criminal charges for knowingly entering or staying in a restricted building or land and for violent entry and disorderly conduct on Jan.6.

“I had discussed the plea offer with Mr. Jackson and he wishes to accept it,” Maria Jacob, his lawyer in the Federal Public Defender’s office, told Judge Randolph Moss at a court hearing in U.S. District of Washington, DC

Jackson was present via a video link but did not speak during the brief hearing. Details of the advocacy offer have not yet been made public; a hearing is scheduled for November 22.

Micajah Joel Jackson shown in the US Capitol East Square on January 6, 2021.

Jackson, a U.S. Marine Lance Corporal who served from September 2015 to October 2017, was arrested in May as part of a broad federal investigation related to the Capitol Riot. A 17-page federal complaint alleged he was photographed walking with members of the Proud Boys, a far-right group with a history of violent confrontations, outside the United States Capitol on January 6. As the group approached the Capitol, the federal complaint alleges, Jackson walked past an individual who shouted through a megaphone, “Whose streets? The group responds by shouting: “Our streets”.

Photos show Jackson wearing an orange armband, which he says was given to him by the Proud Boys of Arizona.

A federal complaint alleges that Micajah Joel Jackson (blue flannel shirt, yellow gloves, and baseball cap) walked through various areas of the U.S. Capitol, including the hallway leading to the National Statuary Hall and the National Statuary Hall on January 6, 2021, the day of the Capitol riot.

The federal complaint said Jackson was part of a group that breached police barricades and invaded the plaza. The insurgency sent lawmakers to scramble for security and delayed Congress from certifying Democrat Joe Biden’s presidential election.

Videos and photos appear to show Jackson inside the hallways of the Capitol and the National Statuary Hall, one of the most popular rooms on the U.S. Capitol.

In an interview with The Arizona Republic in May, Jackson said he was being prosecuted politically for documenting what happened on January 6.

“I didn’t do anything violent. I didn’t hit a cop. I didn’t break a window,” he told The Republic.

In September, Jackson was among several dozen people who gathered on the Arizona Capitol lawn in Phoenix for a “Justice for January 6” rally. The event was a local version of the low-traffic Washington, DC rally a week earlier.

The rally was also attended by a group of self-proclaimed Proud Boys – and by Jackson who, as a condition of his release from prison, promised a federal court judge that he would not associate with the Proud Boys.

Jackson’s appearance at the rally was not mentioned during Wednesday’s hearing.

Jackson told The Republic in May that he was in Ohio, visiting his family for the holidays last year when he heard about President Donald Trump’s rally in Washington, DC on January 6 and said decided to go. He said he was very interested in politics, government and American history.

“I’m exposing political propaganda. I just wanted to go and document, research and interview,” he said.

Jackson describes himself as a libertarian and said he voted for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party’s presidential candidate in 2016. He only became a Trump supporter in 2019.

“It was the bogus impeachment that put me off,” he said.

Jackson said he left Ohio on January 5 – the same day he turned 25 – and arrived at a Virginia hotel about eight hours later, where he checked in and had dinner with friends. The next day he went to the national monument where he took photos and videos on his cell phone.

He told The Republic that the Proud Boys gave him the orange ribbon to put around his arm because he “documented everything” on his cell phone. He was also carrying a backpack, which he said was stocked with medical supplies.

He told The Republic that he had separated from the group he was walking with and that the police barricades had already fallen when he made his way to the United States Capitol. He said the doors to the Capitol were open when he entered. He saw police taking selfies with people and patting the eye.

“If you look at these photos you can see I’m using my phone. I look like a silly tourist,” he said.

He said he spent less than 25 minutes inside.

Jackson said he suffered from PTSD after two years in the US Marine Corps. He said he had decided to leave the building when he saw someone smash glass inside. He said he saw police hitting people and spraying tear gas.

He was not aware of the extent of the violence until later, he said, after leaving the Capitol and returning to his hotel.

More than 600 people face criminal charges related to the Jan.6 attack on Capitol Hill. Since his arrest, Jackson has lived in Arizona, his lawyer said Wednesday.

Contact the reporter at [email protected] or 602-444-8072. Follow her on Twitter @anneryman.

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