5 Republican Senators Write Letter to AG Claiming 'Unequal Justice' of Capitol Rioters Compared to Protesters

Five Republican senators wrote a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to discuss their concern of "unequal justice" for the prosecution of Capitol rioters in comparison to some demonstrators during the social justice protests in 2020.

Signed by Senators Ron Johnson, Tommy Tuberville, Mike Lee, Rick Scott and Ted Cruz, the letter highlighted a few instances of disruption by protests that may have resulted in unequal justice in the prosecution of those involved. They requested "information about our concerns regarding potential unequal justice administered in response to other recent instances of mass unrest, destruction, and loss of life throughout the United States."

NEW🚨5 Republican Senators write letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland raising “concerns regarding potential unequal justice” related to the prosecution of #CapitolRiot suspects compared to those criminally charged in social justice protests during the summer of 2020. pic.twitter.com/xDnRgAwqIY

— Eric Flack (@EricFlackTV) June 8, 2021

"DOJ's apparent unwillingness to punish these individuals who allegedly committed crimes in the spring and summer 2020 protests stands in stark contrast to the harsher treatment of the individuals charged in connection with the January 6, 2021 breach of the US Capitol building in Washington D.C.," according to the letter.

It also said that a database by the DOJ lists each of the defendants charged, with information about each defendant. The senators said that no database exists for those who have committed crimes for participation in the protests in 2020.

Reuters reported in May that nearly 440 people have pleaded guilty since the Capitol attack, and hundreds of separate trials will be pushed forward and have already piled up due to COVID-19.

The Republican senators' letter stated that as of June 7, about 510 individuals have been charged in the Capitol breach. The charges vary, ranging from disorderly conduct to conspiracy and assaulting officers.

However, not all of these trials will appear to go through. Last week, federal prosecutors told a judge that they plan to drop a case against one man, Christopher Kelly of New York City, for lack of evidence, reported NBC News.

The letter to Garland mentioned the insurrection against the federal courthouse in Portland, Oregon, as the city has been the location of riots and protests for several months now. It also mentioned that the riots of 2020 have resulted in at least $1 billion in property damage, which Axios described as the most expensive in insurance history.

"Violence, property damage, and vandalism of any kind should not be tolerated and individuals that break the law should be prosecuted. However, the potential unequal administration of justice with respect to certain protestors is particularly concerning," the letter read.

In February, Garland vowed in a statement that he would "supervise the prosecution of white supremacists and others who stormed the Capitol on January 6 — a heinous attack that sought to disrupt a cornerstone of our democracy: the peaceful transfer of power to a newly elected government."

Newsweek reached out to the Department of Justice for comment.

AG Garland And DHS Secretary Mayorkas Testify
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 12: Attorney General Merrick Garland testifies before the Senate Appropriations committee hearing to examine domestic violent extremism, on May 12, 2020 in Washington, DC. Five Republican senators have written a letter to Garland in concern of "unequal justice" for capitol rioters compared to protesters in some of the 2020 protests. (Photo by Bill O’Leary-Pool/Getty Images)