Jurors reject array of defenses at Capitol riot trials

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Jurors have heard — and rejected — an array of excuses and arguments from the first rioters to be tried for storming the U.S. Capitol. The next jury to get a Capitol riot case could hear another novel defense this week at the trial of a retired New York City police officer.

Thomas Webster, a 20-year veteran of the NYPD, has claimed he was acting in self-defense when he tackled a police officer who was trying to protect the Capitol from a mob on Jan. 6, 2021. Webster’s lawyer also has argued that he was exercising his First Amendment free speech rights when he shouted profanities at police that day. Jury selection began on Monday and is expected to last most of the day.

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