Have you ever sat around wondering, “What does a white man in America have to do to stay locked up?” Well, if you have, you can, unfortunately, cross “be convicted of attempted murder, join a white supremacist prison gang and then later take part in an attempt to overthrow the U.S. government” off of your list of potential offenses that will put a white man under the jail.
As it turns out, a man who fits the above description was allowed on Monday to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge related to the Jan. 6 riot in the U.S. Capitol and was sentenced to six months in jail with credit for time served on all but two days of that sentence.
According to CNN, Michael Curzio, 35, will be released from jail on Wednesday because, due to his prior criminal record, he’s remained in lockup since his arrest on Jan 14.
“Mr. Curzio should be sentenced to the six-month statutory maximum,” federal Judge Carl Nichols said at Curzio’s hearing. “I am not in a position to be able to impose a longer sentence than that. I think that six-month sentence is appropriate here. Mr. Curzio will have, in two days, served that entire sentence.”
The Summerfield, Fla., man previously served eight years in prison after being found guilty of first-degree attempted murder for shooting his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend in the chest, and while he was in prison, he joined a violent white supremacist gang known as the Unforgiven, Newsweek reports.
The Justice Department reportedly opposed Curzio’s release, citing the fact that he was just released from his attempted murder bid in 2019, and just two years later he was caught inside the Capitol building engaging in the deadly rowdy-whitey rebellion. The Justice Department also noted the Unforgiven’s known history of violent acts both in and outside of prison, as well as the presence of Nazi tattoos on Curzio’s body.
Of course, Curzio said in court that he only joined the violent prison gang for protection, and he’s no longer affiliated with it despite the fact that he’s still tatted up with swastikas and other Nazi symbols.
According to CNN, other Capitol rioters who pleaded guilty to the same charges as Curzio are likely to be treated even more leniently.
It’s highly unlikely that other rioters who plead guilty to the same charge will receive the full six-month maximum sentence. Curzio’s case is unique, given his attempted murder conviction, and the fact that he has been incarcerated while awaiting trial since his arrest on January 14.
Curzio, 35, pleaded guilty to one count of unlawfully protesting inside the Capitol and agreed to pay $500 to repair damages to the complex. This has become the standard plea deal that the Justice Department has offered to many Capitol rioters who didn’t act violently.
That $500 Curzio agreed to pay is actually just another instance of him receiving a light penalty for his crimes, seeing as the charges he pleaded guilty to carry a maximum fine of $5,000, which prosecutors decided to waive, according to News 6.
Is it egregious that Curzio has been treated with kid gloves like this? Sure it is. It sounds about white, though.