Prosecutors had asked for Paul Allard Hodgkins to serve 18months. However, the Judge Randolph Moss cited Hodgkins’ "sincere" statements to the court, his lack of a previous criminal record, and lack of any leadership role in the mob.
This is the first resolution for a felony case from the events at the Capitol on January 6th.
"The sentencing could set the bar for punishments of hundreds of other defendants as they decide whether to accept plea deals or go to trial. Hodgkins and others are accused of serious crimes but were not indicted, as some others were, for roles in larger conspiracies.
Under an agreement with prosecutors, he pleaded guilty last month to one count of obstructing an official proceeding, which carries a maximum 20-year prison sentence. In exchange, prosecutors agreed to drop lesser charges, including entering a restricted building and disorderly conduct...
Hodgkins was never accused of assaulting anyone or damaging property. And prosecutors said he deserves some leniency for taking responsibility almost immediately and pleading guilty to the obstruction charge...
Hodgkins’ lawyer, Patrick N. Leduc, described his client as an otherwise law-abiding American who, despite living in a poorer part of Tampa, regularly volunteered at a food bank. He noted that Hodgkins is an Eagle Scout.
His actions on Jan. 6 “is the story of a man who for just one hour on one day lost his bearings ... who made a fateful decision to follow the crowd,” the attorney said.”"