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Nat’l Guard now kicking out first soldier charged in Jan. 6 Capitol storming

Virginia National Guard Airmen near the U.S. Capitol, Jan. 13, 2021, in Washington, D.C. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Bryan Myhr)
April 13, 2022

Jacob Fracker, the first active duty military member to be charged for participating in the Jan. 6, 2021 storming of the U.S. Capitol, was kicked out of the Virginia National Guard this week.

Fracker pleaded guilty in March to a conspiracy charge and was released on bail ahead of his sentencing trial, which could send him to prison for up to five years. Virginia National Guard spokesperson Alfred Puryear told in a statement, “Now that his civilian charges have been adjudicated, the process has started for an administrative separation from the Virginia Army National Guard.”

Fracker is a corporal in the Guard serving as an 11B infantryman. He was also a police officer for Rocky Mount Police Department at the time of the Capitol storming.

He was initially set to face trial alongside fellow Rocky Mount officer Thomas Robertson, with whom he attended the Capitol events, but Fracker instead testified against Robertson last week. Robertson was convicted on Monday of six charges for the Capitol breach.

Both Fracker and Robertson were fired by the police department.

In his testimony at Robertson’s trial last week, Fracker said he hoped the Capitol breach would lead to overturning the 2020 presidential election results. His testimony was a change from his initial testimony in his own case, in which he said he believed he only trespassed when he entered the Capitol building.

Although Fracker is the first service member to face charges, he isn’t the first to be kicked out of the service.

In October, it was revealed that U.S. Army Reservist Timothy Hale-Cusanelli was discharged from the military in June after charged with illegally entering the Capitol, picketing, disorderly conduct and obstructing police officers by making harassing and derogatory statements towards them.

He was demoted in rank to private — the lowest enlisted rank — and given an other-than-honorable discharge in June, after 12 years of military service. The discharge came while he was incarcerated and before he was even convicted of the Capitol charges.