Prosecutors in the case against Doug Jensen, one of the first to break through the Capitol walls on January 6, 2021, described the Des Moines man as laser-focused on one goal: disrupting the peaceful transfer of power from then-President Donald Trump to Joe Biden.
“Mr. Jensen got what he came for,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Emily Allen, who gave the prosecution’s opening statement. She was referring to the hours the delay caused in the ceremony that Congress certified Biden’s victory.
The defense did not attempt to claim that Jensen was not present at the Capitol on January 6, but made a distinction between Capitol rioters “dressed in costume” and those “dressed for battle”. Jensen, backed the defense, was first.
“This is not a whodunit affair,” defense attorney Christopher Davis said in his opening remarks, referring to the many photos and videos that show Jensen inside the Capitol that day- the.
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The prosecution and defense in the federal trial of Capitol rioter Jensen delivered their opening remarks Tuesday night, after two full days of jury deliberations.
Jensen faces seven criminal charges, including one count of civil disorder, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.
Videos and images of Jensen on Capitol Hill on January 6, 2021, many of which were shown on Tuesday, are central to the prosecution’s case in one of the most high-profile cases related to the assault.
A video showing Jensen entering the building, verbally fighting with officers, and chasing U.S. Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman through the halls of the Capitol was shown to the jury in the prosecution’s opening remarks.
Allen pointed out that Jensen was one of the first 10 rioters to break through the Capitol. After being escorted out once, he waited at a broken window for another chance to slip in again, she said. Jensen did not leave the Capitol until he was physically escorted a second time, Allen said.
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The prosecution said it plans to call seven witnesses, four of whom confronted Jensen in the halls of the Capitol building on January 6, 2021.
One of those witnesses is Goodman, who was videotaped guiding rioters led by Jensen away from the Senate chamber where lawmakers were still evacuating. FBI Special Agent Tyler Johnson, who conducted an interview with Jensen in Des Moines days after the attack, and a Secret Service agent assigned to evacuate Vice President Mike Pence from the Capitol will also testify.
Davis, Jensen’s attorney, directed the jury to Jensen’s Jan. 6 attire, a beanie and a black t-shirt with a large “Q” on it, as a tribute to the conspiratorial QAnon movement.
The QAnon conspiracy theory claims that there is a “deep state” apparatus run by political elites, business leaders and Hollywood celebrities (who are also pedophiles) actively working against former President Donald Trump. Davis said Jensen “believes (QAnon) 100 percent.”
Other footage shows the Iowa native confronted by an officer with his arms outstretched and emerging seemingly unfazed from the haze caused by a cracked fire extinguisher.
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Davis urged the jury to separate Jensen’s individual actions from the entire riot, arguing that Jensen did not “get his hands on” or harm anyone.
“Judge his actions and what he did,” Davis said. “Separate him from this day and judge him.”
The jury is made up of ten men and four women. Two of the fourteen jurors are alternates, although they have not yet been identified.
The trial should not last more than a few days, the judge said.