A judge on Tuesday sentenced a suburban couple who admitted they took part in the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol to probation and community service.
U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson sentenced Amy and John Schubert, of Crest Hill, each to 18 months of probation and 100 hours of community service, as well as $500 apiece in restitution and $2,000 in fines for Amy Schubert and $1,500 in fines for John Schubert.
The two were arrested on July 26 after the FBI received a tip about a YouTube video showing a woman inside the Capitol with a jacket bearing the logo for the "Plumbers and Pipefitters Local Union 422 Joliet," according to the criminal complaint. A search warrant for accounts with an 815 area code geolocated at the Capitol that day returned six results, and one of the two female subscribers was Amy Schubert, investigators said.
Photos and videos on Amy Schubert's phone showed she and her husband were inside the Capitol, court documents revealed. She also sent text messages saying she was inside the Capitol, that she got “into a little confrontation with Antifa” and later that she wasn’t sure they should have pictures on Facebook, prosecutors said.
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Federal prosecutors noted that the two entered the Capitol through a broken window, were tracked on camera through the Rotunda, Statuary Hall and elsewhere, and stayed in the building for 34 minutes. Prosecutors also pointed to a video where the Schuberts can be seen chanting with the crowd, as well as a photo that Amy Schubert snapped from inside a congressional meeting room.
After taking a plea deal late last year, both Amy and John Schubert expressed contrition as they appeared before the judge via video conference for their sentencing on Tuesday.
"I am guilty," John Schubert said, adding, "I'm willing to pay the price for what I did."
As she prepared to impose sentence, Jackson admonished the couple, saying that they had made a deliberate choice.
"We're not talking about exercising First Amendment rights," she said. "We're talking about breaking the law."
Indeed, Jackson noted that the Schuberts were part of what she called the first wave to enter the building.
"It took a large number of people to overcome the police and breach the building," she noted. "It couldn't have been accomplished without people like you."
She scolded the couple for joining in what she called "the will of the mob."
"Loyalty to a single head of state is not patriotism," Jackson said. "The attack on the Capitol threatens one of the most important principles of a democratic government: the peaceful transfer of power."
And with a nod to the events unfolding in Ukraine, Jackson said the Capitol assault "damaged our standing and our credibility in the world, the credibility we need this week to stand up to authoritarianism abroad. And no one's going to hear us if we don't do it at home."
The couple's sentencing came the same day that a Texas man became the first person to be convicted by a jury for charges related to the insurrection.
The Schuberts are two of more than 750 people, including 23 from Illinois, who have been arrested in connection with the attack on the Capitol. Like the Schuberts, more than 200 have since pleaded guilty.