NY Proud Boys member pleads guilty to Jan. 6 conspiracy, obstruction

December 22, 2021
The FBI says Dominic Pezzola, a member of the Proud Boys, used a riot shield belonging to the U.S. Capitol Police to break open a window at the Capitol on Jan. 6.
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WASHINGTON – A New York member of the Proud Boys pleaded guilty Wednesday in the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol to conspiracy and obstruction of the Secret Service, which protected Vice President Mike Pence.

Matthew Greene, 34, of Fabius, N.Y., was charged in a conspiracy with two other members of the Proud Boys. Another defendant in his case, Dominic Pezzola of Rochester, N.Y., was charged with smashing through a Capitol window with a police shield to allow the mob to storm the building, which a judge called “the tip of the spear” in the attack.

“Guilty, your honor,” Greene said of the two counts to U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly.

Greene, who has been detained since his arrest in April, faces 41 to 51 months in prison when sentenced March 10, according to federal guidelines, as cited by Greene’s lawyer, Michael Kasmareck.

Greene agreed to cooperate in other prosecutions, which could reduce his sentence. Greene also faced a potential fine of $15,000 to $150,000 and restitution of $2,000 for damage to the Capitol.

Greene became the fifth of 50 people charged with conspiracy in the Jan. 6 attack to plead guilty. Greene had faced seven charges, including destruction of property and disorderly conduct.

Greene was charged with Pezzola, who is charged with smashing the window about 2:13 p.m., and William Joseph Pepe. Pezzola and Pepe have each pleaded not guilty.

Greene was charged with obstructing or interfering with the Secret Service, which protected Pence as he served as Senate president during the counting of Electoral College votes that certified President Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election. The attack temporarily halted the vote count, and Pence was forced to evacuate the Senate chamber.

When Pezzola sought release pending trial, Kelly noted that destruction of government property was defined as a federal crime of terrorism.

“On January 6, 2021, Defendant Dominic Pezzola, a member of the Proud Boys, was the tip of a spear that pierced the United States Capitol,” Kelly wrote March 16.

Greene was arrested April 23, and Kelly found him too dangerous to release, despite his lack of a criminal record and honorable service in the military.

In a discussion after Jan. 6, Greene allegedly said “we’ll kill them all,” which he denies, and other statements in chat rooms endorsing violence, according to Kelly. Greene had an unregistered AR-15 rifle and two semi-automatic handguns in his home with thousands of rounds of ammunition, Kelly said.

“The court finds that the nature and the seriousness of the danger to any person or the community that would be posed by Greene’s release weighs in favor of detention,” Kelly said.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Erik Kenerson asked for Greene to remain detained pending sentencing and Kelly agreed.

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