Ray Epps, center of Jan. 6 conspiracy theory, gets probation sentence
A Jan. 6 rioter, falsely deemed to be a covert FBI agent who helped incite the attack, was sentenced on Tuesday to a year of probation, court records revealed.
The big picture: Former President Trump, right-wing media outlets and Republican politicians pushed the baseless conspiracy theory, which reportedly prompted death threats against Ray Epps and led his family to leave Arizona.
- Chief Judge James E. Boasberg also ordered Epps to pay a $25 special assessment and $500 in restitution, per court records.
Catch up quick: Epps pleaded guilty in September 2023 to a misdemeanor charge over his involvement in the riot.
- The conspiracy theory against Epps began after obscure right-wing media outlets compiled heavily edited videos to portray him as a government agent, Axios' Jacob Knutson reported.
Between the lines: Epps filed a defamation lawsuit against Fox News in July 2023, alleging that Fox News and former Fox News political commentator Tucker Carlson had spread a "fantastical story" about him.
- The suit alleges that Fox News and Carlson had "commenced a years-long campaign spreading falsehoods about" Epps and that "those lies have destroyed" the lives of Epps and his wife, Robyn Epps.
- Since then, Fox News said it has moved to dismiss Epps' lawsuit.
Of note: More than 1,265 people having been charged with crimes related to Jan. 6 in the three years since the attack, per the U.S. attorney's office for D.C.