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'Caveman' faces up to 7 years in prison in Capitol riot case

Aaron Mostofsky will face up to seven years in prison at sentencing in May.

WASHINGTON — The son of a Brooklyn judge will face up to seven years in prison as part of a plea deal for his role in the 2021 Capitol riot.

Aaron Mostofsky appeared before U.S. District Judge James Boasberg on Wednesday to enter his plea of guilty to three counts: civil disorder, theft of government property and entering and remaining in a restricted building. The most serious count, civil disorder, is a felony charge carrying a maximum sentence of up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Mostofsky, whose father is Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Steven Mostofsky, was arrested just days after the riot. Photographs from the day show him inside the Capitol clad in furs and wearing a stolen Capitol Police riot vest. He was indicted on eight counts, including one count of obstruction of an official proceeding that carried a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in prison.

In messages obtained by the FBI, Mostofsky told a friend who also came to D.C. on January 6 to “look for a guy looking like a caveman.” He later added, “Even a caveman knows [the election was stolen].” The FBI also found earlier messages from Mostofsky’s Facebook page in which he suggested rioting after Republicans lost control of the House of Representatives in the 2018 mid-term elections.

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Mostofsky’s legal team – attorneys Jeffrey Schwartz, David Smith and Benjamin Smith – mounted one of the earliest and most aggressive challenges against the Justice Department’s use of a post-Enron obstruction statute. They argued, in part, that the joint session of Congress was not an “official proceeding” under the letter of the law. Boasberg and other judges on the D.C. District Court ultimately rejected that argument.

Mostfosky joins more than 200 defendants in Capitol riot cases who have pleaded guilty, including more than 20 to felony charges. He was scheduled to appear before Boasberg again on May 6 for sentencing.

We're tracking all of the arrests, charges and investigations into the January 6 assault on the Capitol. Sign up for our Capitol Breach Newsletter here so that you never miss an update.

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