An Iowa man pleaded guilty Thursday to taking part in the savage attack on DC Police Officer Michael Fanone during the 2021 Capitol riot.
Kyle James Young, 37, of Redfield, Iowa, appeared virtually before U.S. District Judge Amy B. Jackson to enter his plea of guilty to one felony count of assaulting a police officer.
Young was one of three men indicted in April 2021 for the attack that left Fanone unconscious and resulted in him suffering a heart attack as he was being transported to the hospital. One of Young’s co-defendants, Albuquerque Cosper Head, of Kingsport, Tennessee, was scheduled to plead guilty Friday. The other, Thomas Sibick, was awaiting trial on home incarceration at his parents’ house in Buffalo, New York.
Fanone, who has since left the D.C. Police Department, said in testimony before Congress and in interviews since Jan. 6 that he was worried the mob was going to kill him when they grabbed him and dragged him alone into the crowd. Rioters repeatedly beat him with their fists and flagpoles. Another defendant charged in a separate case, Danny Rodriguez, confessed to FBI agents that he tased Fanone in the neck multiple times.
Fanone said he considered using his gun to defend himself, but decided the crowd would quickly overpower him and use it against him.
Under the law, the maximum sentence for the crime Young pleaded to is eight years. Federal sentencing guidelines are likely to suggest a prison term ranging up to 6 1/2 years, or up to the full eight years if Jackson rules that an enhancement is appropriate because Fanone was restrained at the time of the attack.
If the final guideline maximum is less than eight years, prosecutors have indicated they intend to request an upward enhancement under a law governing conduct “calculated to influence or affect the conduct of government by intimidation or coercion.”
Young is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 25 in Washington, D.C. He has been detained since his arrest in April 2021, and will receive credit for the time already served.