A Texas vineyard owner was sentenced to 83 months in prison for participating in the assault on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. Christopher Grider (41) was found guilty of civil disorder, obstruction of an official proceeding, destruction of government property, remaining in a restricted building or grounds, engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, and an act of physical violence in the Capitol grounds or building.
[O]n Jan. 6, 2021, Grider traveled to Washington, D.C., where he entered the scaffolding on the northwest terrace of the Capitol with a crowd of rioters who had pushed through a police line. He obtained a bike rack and used it to climb to the terrace stairs, and then proceeded up the terrace stairs – at one point, stopping to wave rioters toward the Capitol. Once inside the Capitol, Grider found an electric utility box and pressed buttons as he yelled "Turn the power off!" He then proceeded to the Crypt, where he was part of another group of rioters who pushed through a police line. Grider then proceeded to the hallway outside of the House Chamber, where he waved more rioters in. After this group of rioters pushed through the police line that stood between the mob and the House Main Door, Grider stood with other rioters directly outside of the House Main Door, as they attempted to get inside the House Chamber.
Grider then ran from the House Main Door to the Speaker's Lobby Door, where he watched members of Congress and staff evacuate on the other side. He gave his helmet to another rioter and pushed on the door. The rioter proceeded to use the helmet to break the windows in the door.
Grider, who has three sons and a 3-week-old daughter, was seeking a prison term in the range of 18 months, while the government asked the judge to send him to prison for a term at the high end of the sentencing guidelines recommendation. He faced a maximum prison term of 39½ years.
Grider, whose wife and infant daughter attended Tuesday's sentencing, requested that he be allowed to serve his time at the federal prison in Bastrop. The judge allowed him to remain free until July 18, when he was ordered to voluntarily surrender to the federal Bureau of Prisons. The judge also ordered Grider to surrender the $800 he raised in a Go Fund Me account before it was closed.
Grider was also sentenced to an additional 36 months of supervised release, and ordered to pay restitution of $5,055 and a fine of $812, says the Department of Justice.