In a recent development surrounding the events of the January 6th Capitol breach, a Florida man has been sentenced for his actions during the tumultuous event. Julio Baquero, 38, of Hollywood, Florida, was sentenced to 18 months in prison and 12 months of supervised release, along with a $2,000 restitution fee. Baquero pleaded guilty to a felony charge of civil disorder, acknowledging his role in disrupting a joint session of the U.S. Congress that was convened to count the electoral votes for the 2020 presidential election. Court documents reveal that Baquero physically resisted law enforcement officers attempting to clear the rioters from the Capitol Rotunda and even grabbed the hand of an officer holding a police baton. The case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, with assistance from agencies such as the FBI and the Metropolitan Police Department. With over 1,000 individuals arrested in connection to the Capitol breach, the investigation remains ongoing.
On January 6, 2021, the United States Capitol was breached by a group of individuals during a joint session of the U.S. Congress. The purpose of the session was to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the 2020 presidential election. The actions of the individuals who entered the Capitol disrupted the proceedings and caused significant damage to the building.
One of the individuals involved in the breach was Julio Baquero, a 38-year-old man from Hollywood, Florida. Baquero, along with another individual named Louis Valentin, traveled to Washington, DC, and entered the Capitol building. Baquero was later convicted on a felony charge of civil disorder.
In February, Baquero pleaded guilty to the charges against him. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison, followed by 12 months of supervised release. Additionally, Baquero was ordered to pay restitution of $2,000 as a result of the damage caused during the Capitol breach.
Jan. 6, 2021: Entry into the Capitol
Baquero and Valentin traveled to Washington, DC, on January 6th and gained entry into the Capitol building. CCTV footage from the Capitol during the riots showed that after entering the Capitol, Baquero and Valentin made their way to the Rotunda, a prominent area within the building.
At approximately 3:00 p.m., law enforcement officers from the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department began their efforts to clear the rioters from the Rotunda. CCTV and body-worn camera footage captured Baquero physically resisting the officers’ attempts to clear the rioters out of the Rotunda. Baquero was seen grabbing at officers and even grabbing the hand of an MPD Officer who was holding a police baton.
Resistance to Clearing the Rotunda
Baquero’s resistance to the officers’ attempts to clear the Rotunda did not end with his physical resistance. Body-worn camera footage showed Baquero confronting MPD and USCP officers, shouting insults at them, including calling them “traitors.” This confrontation occurred at approximately 3:05 p.m.
Despite their resistance, Baquero and Valentin were eventually forced out of the Rotunda by law enforcement officers through the east door. From approximately 3:14 p.m. to 3:19 p.m., Baquero stood outside the east door while USCP officers were closing the doors to prevent expelled rioters from reentering.
At that moment, Baquero rushed at the officers and attempted to push open one of the Rotunda doors. USCP officers had to intervene and forcibly remove Baquero from the path of the door to prevent him from reentering the Rotunda.
Prosecution and Investigation
The case against Baquero was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida also provided valuable assistance in the prosecution.
The FBI’s Miami and Washington Field Offices conducted the investigation into Baquero’s actions during the Capitol breach. The Metropolitan Police Department and the U.S. Capitol Police collaborated with the FBI in the investigation.
Scope of the Investigation
The investigation into the Capitol breach has been extensive, resulting in arrests in nearly all 50 states. Over 1,000 individuals have been arrested for crimes related to the breach, with more than 320 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement officers. The investigation remains ongoing as law enforcement agencies continue to gather evidence and identify those responsible for the events of January 6th.
The FBI has established a tips and information hotline for individuals to report any information related to the Capitol breach and the individuals involved. Tips can be provided by calling 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324) or by visiting tips.fbi.gov. The FBI encourages the public to come forward with any information that may assist in the ongoing investigation.
The sentencing of Julio Baquero serves as a reminder that those who participate in acts of violence and civil disorder will face legal consequences for their actions. The breach of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, was a significant event in our nation’s history, and the ongoing investigation into the individuals involved underscores the commitment of law enforcement to hold them accountable.
The Department of Justice, along with its partners in law enforcement, will continue to work diligently to identify and prosecute those responsible for the events of that day. The collaboration between federal, state, and local agencies is essential in bringing justice to those affected by the Capitol breach and upholding the rule of law.
For more information on the work of the United States Attorney’s Office in the District of Columbia, including their efforts to assist victims and reduce gun crime, visit their website.
The commitment to reducing gun crime in America is a nationwide effort. To learn more about the Department of Justice’s initiatives in this area, please visit their website.