A Texas man has been sentenced to two years in federal prison for firing multiple rounds at local law enforcement, despite originally agreeing to surrender for his involvement in the Jan. 6, 2021, U.S. Capitol attack in Washington.
Nathan Pelham, aged 41, was sentenced to a 24-month prison term, with 76 days of credit for time already served. This comes after he pleaded guilty to the charge of possessing a firearm as a felon, in relation to the April shooting incident at his residence in Greenville.
Pelham faced four misdemeanor counts for entering the Capitol. However, these charges were later reduced as part of a plea deal. During a welfare check at his residence, authorities said he opened fire on law enforcement who were responding.
Nathan Pelham, at the center, received a two-year sentence on Wednesday after admitting to being in possession of a firearm as a convicted felon.
Pelham’s father contacted the police to inform them that his son had made threats to take his own life. This came after Pelham had previously agreed to turn himself in on the misdemeanor charges earlier that day.
According to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Texas, law enforcement officers at the scene reported hearing bullets “whiz” by them outside of his home.
During a subsequent search of his property, law enforcement officers discovered a Smith & Wesson 9 mm pistol and four boxes of ammunition. The U.S. attorney’s office noted that there were also several 9 mm sized holes in the walls.
According to prosecutors, the police decided to leave the property that night to ensure Pelham’s safety, allowing him to sleep off his drinking.
After more than 24 hours, Pelham decided to surrender at a nearby police station. This decision was made after negotiations with both the police and his defense attorney, according to prosecutors.
The U.S. Capitol Police video captures a man identified as Pelham, circled in red, appearing at the Capitol on January 6, 2021, in Washington.
During the investigation, Pelham reluctantly agreed to cooperate with FBI agents as part of a plea deal. However, prosecutors found his behavior to be evasive and, at times, dishonest, which led them to request a substantial sentence.
According to a court filing, it is stated that Pelham’s lies were not limited to a single incident but rather occurred over a period of time and in multiple interviews. This pattern of behavior raises concerns about the individual’s character and integrity. Moreover, it is argued that Pelham’s actions not only put himself at risk but also endangered others in the community. The fact that Pelham refuses to take responsibility for his actions further reinforces the need for a significant sentence that will hold him accountable for his behavior.
According to court documents, Pelham had a long history of criminal activities before the 2021 Capitol riot. He had been involved in theft, evading arrest, using false identification, burglary, unauthorized use of a vehicle, driving with an invalid license, assault, and bail jumping.
According to prosecutors, Pelham has shown a lack of respect for the law. They argue that his refusal to cooperate with the police and his repeated dishonesty indicate that he is willing to do or say anything to benefit himself.
Pelham’s attorneys have not yet responded to requests for comment.