Florida man pleads guilty to assaulting police at U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6

FILE PHOTO: Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump gather in Washington
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By Sarah N. Lynch

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A Florida man who assaulted police officers with a wooden plank and a fire extinguisher at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 pleaded guilty to assault charges on Monday, the U.S. Justice Department said.

Robert Scott Palmer, 54, of Largo, is one of at least 185 people charged with assaulting or impeding police on Jan. 6, as throngs of former Republican President Donald Trump's supporters stormed the Capitol in a failed bid to stop Congress from certifying President Joe Biden's election victory.

Prosecutors say Palmer threw the wooden plank at Capitol and Washington, D.C. police while they were protecting the lower west terrace entrance, and later sprayed a fire extinguisher at police officers until it was empty.

He then threw the fire extinguisher at the officers.

Palmer is one of more than 600 people facing charges in connection with the Jan. 6 riots.

He will be sentenced on Dec. 17, and faces a statutory maximum of up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

(Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Editing by Dan Grebler)

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