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Edward Eugene Hemenway II raises his arms in triumph while standing on a military vehicle outside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

Arms raised in victory, insurrectionist and Winchester resident Edward Eugene Hemenway II stood atop a U.S. military vehicle outside the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6 rebellion.

A smiling Hemenway had just spent 17 minutes inside the Capitol with a mob of supporters of then-President Donald Trump. The mob stormed the Capitol, assaulted police, trashed congressional offices and succeeded in delaying the Electoral College certification of new President Joe Biden. Four people died that day — one was shot by a Capitol police officer, one was trampled by the mob and two had heart attacks; 140 police officers were injured. Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who was hit with chemical spray by rioters, died of a stroke the next day.

But Hemenway, who took a selfie in the Capitol wearing a camouflage Trump 2020 cap and raising his middle finger, didn’t participate in the violence or vandalism. And he quickly cooperated with the FBI and expressed remorse. In an Oct. 6 letter to federal Judge Tanya C. Chutkin, Hemenway said he was “stupid and wrong” for invading the Capitol.

“I am very sorry for any trouble or psychological stress that I might have caused anyone that day,” Hemenway wrote. “I had no idea that anyone was even in the Capitol. If I had that knowledge beforehand, I would have definitely not entered.”

Hemenway, 38, of the 900 block of East Cork Street, pleaded guilty in July to to parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building and faced up to six months imprisonment. He sought probation rather than imprisonment, but he didn’t get it. On Wednesday in U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia, Chutkin sentenced Hemenway to 45 days in federal prison and 60 hours of community service. The sentence was above the 30-day sentence sought by the government, according to William Miller, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

In a letter to Chutkin, defense attorney Meredith M. Ralls had sought leniency for Hemenway. She said he invaded the Capitol spontaneously and had gone to Washington, D.C., with his cousin Robert Bauer and their wives for a sightseeing tour before deciding to take part in the “Stop the Steal” rally featuring Trump. She said Hemenway became caught up in an “infectious group mentality” inherent to riots and regrets it. “Mr. Hemenway understands first hand how group think and crowd psychology can influence a person to make decisions that he would not normally make, and wants nothing to do with such dangers in the future,” Ralls wrote.

In an interview, Ralls said Chutkin’s sentence was overly punitive. “I don’t think he should have gone to jail at all,” she said.

At the rally, the Republican Trump, who was impeached for instigating the insurrection, falsely said Democrats had stolen the election from him and said, “If you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore.”

Franchesca Hemenway, Hemenway’s wife, said her husband and Bauer’s participation in the uprising was just them obeying Trump.

“When Trump asked them to march down to Pennsylvania Avenue and meet him at the Capitol, they blindly obliged,” she wrote in a letter to Chutkin seeking leniency for her husband. “The president of the United States at that time openly spoke on the podium and asked his supporters to go to the Capitol. They thought the former president would be behind them.”

Prosecutors countered that Hemenway, a long-haul trucker and father of two young children, wasn’t a victim of circumstances and was well aware an insurrection was underway. In a sentencing memorandum to Chutkin, they noted Bauer told FBI agents he and Hemenway entered the Capitol to “occupy the space” and screamed “Stop the steal!” with the other rioters.

Prosecutors also noted Hemenway told the FBI he saw overturned bicycle racks and a “Do not enter” sign before entering the Capitol and saw a rioter break into a congressional office.

“A mob isn’t a mob without the numbers. The people who were committing those violent acts did so because they had the safety of numbers,” said the memorandum written by assistant U.S. attorney Elizabeth C. Kelley and Acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia Channing D. Phillips. “Make no mistake, Hemenway was not a mere tourist that day.”

Prosecutors also questioned the sincerity of Hemenway’s expressions of remorse, noting he posed for a photo atop the vehicle after leaving the Capitol. “His remorse came when he realized he was in trouble,” they said.

Kelley and Phillips also noted Hemenway has a violent criminal record. In 2006, he pleaded guilty to sexual battery and criminal confinement — a rape charge was dismissed — and was sentenced to three years with two years suspended. After being released, he violated probation and was imprisoned from 2008 to 2011. They said he’s been off parole since 2013.

— Contact Evan Goodenow at egoodenow@winchesterstar.com

(30) comments

WINCBEST

I don't know why but these insurrectionist are getting a light sentence and should do more time than a slap on the wrist. This is why things like this happen because there is not much of a penalty for it when it does. Stop the dam deal making and sentence them correctly. This person should not be permitted to drive a tractor trailer if he is that stupid..

john brown

It's white privilege pure and simple

TheOneAndOnlyNuri

Despite the paltry sentence, this is another example of "eff around and find out".

KatB26

Insurrection: Violent attempt to take control of or revolt against the government. None of the citizens arrested for the January 6th event has been charged with insurrection. None were armed. Most have been charged with trespass or demonstrating. Therefore, there was no insurrection. For the headline to call Mr. Hemenway an "insurrectionist" is inaccurate at best and defamatory at worst. Shame on the Star. Blowing up the Senate reception area in 1915 by a German professor or again in 1983 by two female leftists, or the 1954 shooting up the House of Representatives by five Puerto Rican Nationalists, those were acts of insurrection. Please note, in each of these cases, actual insurrectionists entered the US Capitol with arms or bombs. The January 6th trespassers entered with cameras. Perhaps your local reporting could be a tad more accurate and bit less inflammatory.

Alsochristie

Get a grip, sweet pea! If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, walks like a duck…

Spock Here

The gaslighting continues

Old Western Man

[thumbup][thumbup]

Chris 22602

They erected a gallows outside and were yelling hang Mike Pence and Pelosi? We’re they hanging them to show them their admiration and love?

Spock Here

Wondering how horrible it would have been if they had gotten ahold of those two.

Deus_Vult

Oh no, can't do that, requires actual journalism skills.

john brown

Put him in the general population and let's hope he runs into Black Live Matters and Antifa supporters..... from the looks of him, he's already shaking in his pamper.

saltydogg1743

[thumbup][beam]

Chris 22602

They should have tried him for treason and given him the death penalty.

john brown

[thumbup][thumbup][thumbup][thumbup]

Alsochristie

[thumbup]

Catherine Giovannoni

Forty-five days is a slap on the wrist for the insurrectionists. Shame on him.

StellaBob

Typical tRUMP supporter. What a putz.

Old Western Man

[rolleyes] the hyperbolic language chosen by the author is absurd, merely textbook propaganda.

The mostly peaceful events of Jan. 6 just might be the worst example of an insurrection in human history.

Joe Crane

Well said. Why aren't the BLM protesters who tried to invade the White House called "insurrectionists?"

Also, the vehicle he is standing on is not a military vehicle, it's a Capitol Police vehicle.

Very bad reporting.

Spock Here

Nobody tried invading the White House. TFG went into hiding tho.

john brown

BLM invading the White House? are all of you right wingers this uninformed and stupid... you don't have to answer that, we all know you are.

TheOneAndOnlyNuri

"What about" is usually the beginning of a regrettable sentence.

Doc Samson

And yet your crew uses it with impunity, so... can you say "irrelevant"? I know I can! [yawn]

Spock Here

"Textbook propaganda"? No, we all saw it happen in real time. Andit wasn't "mostly peaceful". Hone those gaslighting "skills."

Old Western Man

[lol] @Spank "mostly peaceful" is a well known satirical reference to alleged "news reporting" on widespread Antifa/BLM violence by Democrat media arms. The OG "news reporter" derision if you will, of "Let's go Brandon." [lol]

Having to explain it kind of loses the fun, but I'm not really certain that you're playing ignorant. (shrug)

john brown

But then we all know playing ignorant is something "old white man" never has to do .... he is ignorant and hateful.

TheOneAndOnlyNuri

😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂🤩🤩🤩🤩

Spock Here

Kultist "satire"....hysterical!

slowe

He should loose his right to vote. 45 days is too few.

Alsochristie

Upstanding citizen and failed former president supporter Hemenway has already done hard time for sexual battery, criminal confinement, and parole violation. I should hope that makes him a felon!

45 days in the pokey is far too lenient for him. Kudos to Judge Tanya Chutkin though for ignoring Hemenway’s attorney’s request for probation.

By the way, don’t felons lose the privilege to vote among others? Oh the irony!

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