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Former Natick official to serve 15 days in jail for her part in the Jan. 6 attack

Natick Town Meeting member Suzanne Ianni wraps herself in the group called Super Happy Fun America's so-called "Straight Pride" flag as she and other supporters of President Trump wait for him to address them during a rally in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 6. (Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images)
Natick Town Meeting member Suzanne Ianni wraps herself in the group called Super Happy Fun America's so-called "Straight Pride" flag as she and other supporters of President Trump wait for him to address them during a rally in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 6. (Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images)

The former Natick town official charged with participating in the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol has been sentenced to 15 days in jail.

Suzanne Ianni was sentenced in federal court in Washington, D.C. Friday for charges of entering the Capitol building last year to protest President Biden's election. She will have to report to the federal Bureau of Prisons to begin serving the sentence. The date for her to report has not been set.

Prosecutors had recommended that Ianni serve 30 days in jail, three years probation, perform 60 hours of community service and pay $500 in restitution.

"Such a sentence protects the community, promotes respect for the law, and deters future crime," wrote Trial Attorney for the US Justice Department Thomas Campbell in the government's sentencing memorandum.

Ianni's attorneys requested no jail time but one year of probation, 40 hours of community service and $500 in restitution.

The government said Ianni traveled with other members of the group called "Super Happy Fun America" to Washington and led rioters at the Capitol in chants of "fight for Trump." Federal prosecutors also said Ianni was part of a group of demonstrators that "overwhelmed" a line of police officers and allowed rioters to move further into the Capitol building.

"In total, Ianni remained in the Capitol for approximately twenty-three minutes," the government's sentencing memorandum said. "during which time she saw other rioters breaking windows and doors to gain access to the Capitol, walked by injured rioters when entering the Capitol, confronted a line of police officers, and eventually walked past those police officers to get further into the Capitol."

The government also pointed to Ianni's online efforts to raise money for her legal defense, where she described the case against her as a "political prosecution." The memorandum said Ianni has not shown remorse for her actions and incarceration would help deter others who try to disrupt democracy.

Ianni's attorneys submitted a dozen letters on her behalf saying that she was attending a political event, has no prior criminal record and was active in the community and local politics, including serving as a Natick Town Meeting member. She no longer lives in Natick.

Among the letters of support for Ianni was one from her father, retired New Jersey state trooper John Genz. He said Ianni did not realize that she was breaking the law when she entered the Capitol and would have left the building if a police officer told her to do so.

"She was not there to damage any property or injure any person, but was following a misguided patriotic expression," Genz wrote.

Ianni's attorneys argued that Ianni traveled to Washington to participate in a political rally and "was swept up as the protest activity went too far."

"Ms. Ianni did not engage in violence or destroy property, nor did she urge others to do so," the defense sentencing memorandum said "She walked the halls for a short period of time, and left when directed to do so by police officers."

The defense sentencing memorandum also said that Ianni "has been rattled by significant personal consequences" since Jan. 6, including the dissolution of her marriage, loss of her position in local government and "damages to relationships."

"Ms. Ianni is a strong-willed individual," said Ianni's attorney Henry Fasoldt," She will do her 15 days and after she wraps, she looks forward to getting on with her life."

Deborah Becker Twitter Host/Reporter
Deborah Becker is a senior correspondent and host at WBUR. Her reporting focuses on mental health, criminal justice and education.

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