Trump Indictment Includes Charge With Potential for Death Penalty

Trump Indictment Includes Charge With Potential for Death Penalty

( – In the aftermath of the 2020 election, then-President Donald Trump believed he’d won. He sued multiple states in an attempt to prove he was the real victor. He and his team also spoke to officials in some of the most critical states. On January 6, 2021, he told his supporters to march to the US Capitol to protest the certification of the election results.

More than two years later, he’s being charged with federal crimes related to his actions following the election. One of the charges in the indictment carries a possible death sentence, if other elements are proven.

New Charges

On August 1, the 45-page federal grand jury indictment was unsealed for the public. Jack Smith made an announcement in front of TV cameras, saying the former president was being charged with four federal crimes in the DC District Court.

The charges against Trump include one count of obstruction or attempted obstruction of an official proceeding, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, conspiracy to defraud the US, and conspiracy against rights. The last of those charges is getting a lot of attention because it can carry a death sentence.

Conspiracy Against Rights

The fourth count of the indictment accuses Trump of knowingly acting to “combine, conspire, confederate, and agree with co-conspirators […] to injure, oppress, threaten, and intimidate” those who were exercising the right to vote and have their vote counted.

That part has a long history in the US, dating back to the reconstruction acts known as the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) Acts. Since then, the civil rights law has been used to prosecute members of the KKK who have caused violence and killed people. The law states those convicted of the crime are eligible for the death penalty if someone dies while the suspect is in the commission of the crime.

Is Trump In Danger?

Someone did die on January 6 at the Capitol. Ashli Babbitt was shot and killed by the police. She joined a crowd who broke into the building during the Joint Session of Congress, where lawmakers were trying to certify the election.

The mob of people tried to access the House Chamber as police were evacuating lawmakers. They attempted to get into multiple doors. Police officers positioned themselves by those entries to protect lawmakers. At some point, members of the mob broke the windows on one of the doors. Babbitt allegedly tried to climb through one, and an officer shot her. She later died at Washington Hospital Center.

Whether the US attorney plans to pursue that element remains to be seen.

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