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New and existing charges filed against Floridians in Capitol riot

A total of 19 people face new or additional charges.
Credit: AP
A large group of police arrive at the Capitol, Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022, in Washington. President Joe Biden and members of Congress are solemnly marking the first anniversary of the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol insurrection. Lawmakers are holding events Thursday to reflect on the violent attack by supporters of then-President Donald Trump. The ceremonies will be widely attended by Democrats, but almost every Republican on Capitol Hill will be absent. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON D.C., DC — An indictment relating to the Jan. 6 attack on the United States Capitol was unsealed Thursday. A federal grand jury in Washington, D.C. returned the indictment on Wednesday. 

A total of 19 people face new or additional charges. 

According to our WWSB, the new indictment collectively charges 19 people with corruptly obstructing an official proceeding. 18 of the 19 are charged with conspiring to obstruct an official proceeding and conspiring to prevent an officer of the United States from discharging a duty. 11 of the 19 are charged with seditious conspiracy. Some of the people are also facing other related charges. 

Several people, including a Sarasota chiropractor, are among the ones facing multiple charges. Joseph Hackett was indicted a year ago for his role in planning the activity in Washington with other Oath Keepers. WWSB reports that those charges included obstruction of an official proceeding and aiding and abetting; destruction of government property and aiding and abetting; entering a restricted building; tampering with documents or proceedings.

Other Floridians were named in the indictment include Kenneth Harrelson, 41, of Titusville; Kelly Meggs, 52, of Dunnellon; and David Moerschel, 44, of Punta Gorda. 

The new indictment charges 11 defendants with seditious conspiracy and other charges for crimes related to the Jan. 6 breach, which disrupted a joint session of Congress to certify electoral votes from the 2020 presidential election. 

One Tampa Bay area attorney explained the meaning of seditious conspiracy.

"In this situation, there’s got to be some intent or some furtherance of interfering with, or overthrowing, or somehow attacking a government function," Joshua Sheridan explained.

Sheridan is a managing partner for a local Tampa Bay Law Firm, Busciglio Sheridan Schoeb PA. Sheridan explained the charges listed in the indictment are serious. For example, seditious conspiracy could hold a prison sentence up to 20 years. 

"They are very serious charges and they are also at the forefront of the media and the attention of the country, so I think how these people are treated will kind of set kind of a standard of what we do in the future," Sheridan stated.