A man who wore a “Camp Auschwitz” as he stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021 has pleaded guilty.
On Wednesday (Jan. 26), 57-year-old Robert Packer pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor trespassing charge. He could face up to six months in prison, however, many rioters who pleaded to the same charge and weren’t accused of violence received less or no jail time.
According to CNN, Packer was photographed inside the government building during the deadly insurrection. His presence sparked outrage across social media platforms due to the black sweatshirt he wore. It had a graphic image of crossbones and a skull along with the words “Camp Auschwitz,” which was the name of the Nazi concentration camp where more than one million people — mostly Jews — were killed during World War II.
The bottom of Packer’s sweatshirt read, “Work brings freedom,” which is a translation of a saying that was on the gates of the concentration camp.
Prosecutors say Packer traveled from Virginia to Washington, D.C. on Jan. 6, 2021 to attend the pro-Trump rally. According to his plea agreement, which was read aloud during the hearing, he entered the Capitol despite seeing broken glass and other rioters fighting the police. Packer was nearby when Ashli Babbitt was shot and when rioters broke Nancy Pelosi’s office sign. After about 20 minutes, he left.
The FBI raided Packer’s apartment after he was arrested and found a folder titled “Whites Only Material,” swastika artwork, pictures of Hitler and other Nazi visuals.
So far, more than 730 people have been charged with federal crimes related to last year’s riot. About 200 of them have pleaded guilty, including Robert Palmer, the Capitol rioter who used a fire extinguisher to assault police officers. He was sentenced to 63 months behind bars for his actions — the harshest punishment that has been imposed on anyone who participated in the insurrection so far.
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