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Seffner man pleads guilty to role in 2021 US Capitol riot

Mitchell Todd Gardner II, 34, used a pepper spray device against officers and faces up to 45 years in prison at his Oct. 21 sentencing.
Mitchell Todd Gardner II of Seffner pleaded guilty Monday to multiple charges for his role in the storming of the U.S. Capitol in January 2021.
Mitchell Todd Gardner II of Seffner pleaded guilty Monday to multiple charges for his role in the storming of the U.S. Capitol in January 2021. [ Pinellas County Sheriff's Office ]
Published Jun. 29

WASHINGTON — A Seffner man has pleaded guilty to three felony charges related to the insurrection and storming of the U.S. Capitol in January 2021.

Mitchell Todd Gardner II, 34, pleaded guilty Monday in federal court in the District of Columbia to civil disorder, obstruction of an official proceeding and assaulting, resisting, or impeding officers with a dangerous weapon, according to court records. He faces up to 45 years in prison at his Oct. 21 sentencing.

Gardner was arrested in Tampa in June 2021.

An image taken from a federal criminal complaint shows Mitchell Todd Gardner II of Seffner standing in the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
An image taken from a federal criminal complaint shows Mitchell Todd Gardner II of Seffner standing in the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. [ U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ]

According to court documents, Gardner joined with others in objecting to Democratic President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory over former Republican President Donald Trump. A mob attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in an attempt to stop Congress from certifying election results, authorities said. Five people died in the violence.

According to the criminal complaint, Gardner was part of a mob just outside the lower west terrace tunnel of Congress and used a pepper spray device against officers within the tunnel area. The contents hit one officer directly in the face shield and splattered onto two other officers, officials said.

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