A man who was seen crushing a Metropolitan Police Department officer in a door frame during thehas been convicted of nine offenses, seven of them felonies, the Justice Department said Tuesday. Patrick McCaughey III, 25, of Ridgefield, Connecticut, and two others were convicted on multiple charges in a bench trial by U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden, an appointee of former President Trump.
Tristan Chandler Stevens, 26, of Pensacola, Florida, and David Mehaffie, 63, of Kettering, Ohio, were found guilty of five felony charges and two felony charges, respectively.
On Jan. 6, 2021, "the three defendants attempted to break into the building by directing other rioters, participating in heave-hos against the police line, using riot shields stolen from the Capitol Police, and assaulting three specific officers," the Justice Department said. "Mehaffie hung from an archway and shouted direction from above, and McCaughey and Stevens were key players in the melee below. McCaughey grabbed a riot shield and used it as a weapon. Even after officers finally cleared the tunnel area, the three defendants illegally remained on Capitol grounds."
All three men were convicted of assault charges, however, McFadden only agreed to add a dangerous weapon enhancement, which could increase the eventual prison sentence, to McCaughey's convictions, according to CBS affiliate WUSA-TV. McFadden ruled that the riot shields the three men stole were not inherently dangerous weapons, but that it become one the way McCaughey used it, WUSA-TV reports.
McCaughey was captured on video using a riot shield to pin MPD officer Daniel Hodges in a doorway during the riot. Hodges could be seen screaming out in pain as he was being crushed in the doorway as rioters attempted to enter the Capitol building. In an interview with CBS News, Hodgesthat in videos, you can see McCaughey grabbing his gas mask, beating his head against the door, and ripping it away.
"I definitely considered that that might be it," Hodges said. "I might not be able to make it out of there."
Hodges, along with several other law enforcement officers, also testified before the House select committee investigating Jan. 6. He repeatedly called the rioters "terrorists" throughout his opening statement.
He said that as his head was being "bashed" by a rioter, he feared that "at best" he might collapse and become a liability to his colleagues. "At worst," he added, "be dragged down into the crowd and lynched."
He said, "I did the only thing I could do and screamed for help."
The seven felonies McCaughey was convicted of are: three counts of aiding or abetting or assaulting, resisting, or impeding law enforcement officers, including one involving a dangerous weapon; one count of obstruction of an official proceeding; one count of interfering with a law enforcement officer during a civil disorder; one count of disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon, and one count of engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon.
He faces decades in prison.
Stevens and Mehaffie were each acquitted of obstruction charges.
McCaughey, who was 23 at the time, was arrested Jan. 19, 2021 in South Salem, New York, according to The Associated Press.
McCaughey, who has both U.S. and German citizenship, was unemployed and lived with his mother in Ridgefield, an affluent town along the New York border, public defender Jason Ser said at the time. He was arrested at his father's second home, where he was quarantining, the AP reported.
McCaughey will be sentenced on Jan. 26, 2023, according to the Justice Department.
Cassidy McDonald contributed reporting.
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