The tearful confession of a Donald Trump supporter who drove a stun gun into the neck of a D.C. police officer seized by the mob on Jan. 6 will be admissible at trial, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.
Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled that the confession of Danny Rodriguez, a Trump supporter from California who electroshocked D.C. Metropolitan Police Officer Mike Fanone during the brutal attack on the U.S. Capitol, would be allowed to be introduced as evidence.
Judge Jackson said that Rodriguez did not unambiguously and unequivocally assert his right to cut off questioning during his interview when FBI special agents asked him about assaulting Fanone. No reasonable viewer of the video would believe that Rodriguez’s assertion of his rights was unambiguous and unequivocal, and officers weren’t required to cut off questioning, she ruled.
“He knew his rights,” Jackson said, noting that Rodriguez was both read his Miranda rights and signed a form acknowledging he knew his rights. “He understood when he waived his rights exactly what the subject of the questioning was going to be.”
“The government has met its burden to prove that the interview was a voluntary one,” she said.
“Omg I did so much fucking shit rn and got away,” Rodriguez wrote in a “PATRIOTS 45” group chat, according to the indictment. “Tazzzzed the fuck out of the blue.”
Rodriguez wasn’t bragging as much when the FBI picked him up at his mother’s house back in March. Sitting in a FBI office, Rodriguez tearfully confessed to his crimes, calling himself “not smart,” “so stupid,” “an asshole” and a “fucking piece of shit” during his interview by special agents.
FBI special agents told Rodriguez that “antifa, BLM and the Huffington Post” were telling “the Danny Rodriguez story,” and that he should speak to them to tell his side of the story.
“Are we all that stupid that we thought we were going to go do this and save the country and it was all going to be fine after? We really thought that. That’s so stupid, huh?” he asked the FBI special agents.
Rodriguez’s federal public defenders tried to get his confession tossed, arguing that he wasn’t properly advised of his Miranda rights and that FBI special agents were obliged to cut off questioning when Rodriguez shook his head when asked if he wanted to talk about assaulting an officer.
More than 700 people have been arrested in connection with the Jan. 6 attack, roughly one-quarter of the total number of Jan. 6 participants who engaged in chargeable conduct that day. The FBI is still asking the public for help identifying more than 350 individuals in the pro-Trump mob wanted for serious crimes on Jan. 6, including more than 250 suspects they say assaulted members of law enforcement.