Lead follow or get out of the way..........


As justin timberlake would say ......cry me a river ........no one held a gun to his fucking head  .....he made a  decision .....i mean n i like the donald .....president trump ....but i would not sacrifice   fuck all for him ....he is a  president .....all presidents do not  give a flying fuck about your dumb ass........no one  is going to back you up ......he must have known this  whole  charade  was  going to go tits up ........he does not look that bright ......he got  famous  though ......fame  comes at a  price ......he says he was a good  father  ....if he was  then he would not be in the  situation he was  in .....i  say macho pride  and  patriotism .....which  is  not  worth a  flea  on a  dogs ass.....donald did what donald  did .......weak minds  are  easily mesmerized ......everyone wants  fame  and  everyone  wanted  to be  around  donald  ....he did not  care ....he was prez .....the price of  stupidty  usually  comes at a high cost...........Danald is still free  .... who is the  smart one 




Ohio man convicted in Jan. 6 attack to Select Committee: 'I lost my job ... sold my house'

In this article:
  • Donald Trump
    Donald Trump
    45th President of the United States
Stephen Ayres, 39, of Champion Township, Trumbull County,  testifies Tuesday during a public hearing before the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol. Ayres, who pleaded guilty in June to criminal charges for entering the Capitol during the insurrection, said he lost his job and his home as a result of what happened.

An Ohio man who pleaded guilty to illegally entering the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6, 2021 riots testified Tuesday before the House Select Committee investigating the attack, held up as an example of an average working American who got caught up in former President Trump's big lie that the 2020 election was stolen.

Stephen Michael Ayres, 39, a resident of Champion Township, Trumbull County, in northeast Ohio, testified that he was "a family man and a working man" who was a supervisor at a cabinet company where he had been working for going on 20 years.

"Family is my life," Ayres testified with his wife sitting behind him. He added that he enjoyed camping, basketball and playing games with his son.

Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riotsOne year later, 6 of 38 Ohioans charged in U.S. Capitol insurrection have pleaded guilty

Ayres testified he was also "pretty hardcore into the social media," following President Trump on Twitter, Facebook and other social media. When Trump urged his followers on social media to come to the "Stop the Steal Rally" on Jan. 6, 2021 in Washington, Ayres testified, "I felt like I needed to be there."

Ayres could not be reached by The Dispatch on Tuesday night for comment on his testimony.

Stephen Ayres: Things said, and left unsaid, during testimony before Jan. 6 committee

At the time, Ayres testified Tuesday, he believed the lie that Trump had won the election and that the outcome was rigged. He said he had some friends who were going to the rally in Washington and that he "hopped on right at the end" to join them.

What Ayres didn't say in his testimony — and wasn't asked about during questioning by Jan. 6 committee members — was that he posted a warning on social media several days before that there would be a civil war if Trump was removed as president, according to court records in his criminal case.

Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riotsColumbus man who posted video of himself at Jan. 6 insurrection gets 30 days in prison

On Jan. 2, 2021, Ayres also posted to his Facebook page Trump's Dec. 19, 2020 tweet urging his followers to come to the rally scheduled four days later in Washington. Ayres called on others to join in and be part of "history."

"When your grandchildren ask, 'Where were you when (the rally) happened,' what's your answer going to be?" he wrote.

Ayres testified at the hearing that he and his friends originally intended to just attend the rally at the Ellipse on Jan. 6, 2021. But they decided to go to the Capitol, he testified, because, "The president got everybody riled up (during his speech there) and told everybody to head (to the Capitol)."

Ayres said he and others believed from his speech that Trump intended to go to the Capitol with them.

Ayres was asked during his testimony how he felt marching to the Capitol and if he thought by marching there the election would be overturned.

"I'm angry," Ayres testified about his mood at that time. He testified that his main hope as he marched with his friends and others on the Capital was "that Vice President Pence was not going to certify the election.

"Also the whole time on our way down there we kept hearing about this 'big reveal' that everyone was talking about, and we kinda thought that (Pence not certifying the election) was it, and that hope was there."

Ayers was also asked if he felt the far-right militia groups like the Oath Keepers and Proud Boys were on his side, and whether he had any reservations marching on the Capitol with them.

"I was probably following them online myself," Ayers testified. "I felt like, 'Hey, you know, they're on our team.' I didn't have a problem with it. I thought it was a good thing."

Entering the Capitol 

Court records and photos indicate Ayres entered the Capitol through a door on the Senate wing wearing a "CNN Fake News" face mask and a back pack.  He was in the building about 10 minutes, records state.

Ayres testified that after President Trump put out a video Tweet at 4:17 p.m. Jan. 6, 2021 telling his followers to leave the Capitol, he and his friends and others left. "We left right when that came out," he said.

Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riots: 'Brainwashed' by Trump backers, Ohioan still in jail for Capitol riot

Later in the day, though, Ayres posted about entering the Capitol on Facebook, court records state. Prosecutors allege in court documents that Ayres also appeared in a video with others posted to YouTube identifying himself by name, stating that the "fake news" would not accurately report what happened that day, and discussing his actions. He claimed in the video that Democrats, leftists and police had engaged in a conspiracy to instigate Trump followers into storming the Capitol.

Ayres did not testify about any of that Tuesday — nor was he asked about any of that by the Jan. 6 committee members who questioned him. He was asked what happened to his life since.

The aftermath: 'It definitely changed my life ... not for the good'

Ayres pleaded guilty in June to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building and is scheduled to be sentenced in September. It was a member of Ayres' family who ultimately turned him in to federal investigators looking for those who entered the Capitol on Jan. 6, according to court records.

"Basically you know, I lost my job," Ayres testified. "Since this all happened, you know I pretty much sold my house. And so, everything that happened with the charges, you know, thank God, a lot of them did get dismissed.

"I mean it definitely changed my life ... not for the good. Definitely not for the better."

Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot arrests: Here are Ohioans who have been charged in connection to the attack

Asked if he still believes the election was stolen from Trump, Ayres replied: "Not so much now. ... I started doing my own research and everything. ...For me, for something like that to actually take place, it's too big to keep something like that quiet ... With all the lawsuits (challenging election results) being shot down one after another — that's mainly what convinced me."

Ayres was asked how he feels about former President Trump continuing to spread the lie that the election was stolen even though testimony before the Select Committee has shown Trump was told there was no evidence of it.

"It makes me mad," Ayres testified. "I was hanging on every word he was saying. Everything he was putting out I was following it. If I was doing it, hundreds of thousands or millions of other people were doing it. Or maybe even still doing it."

Ayres added: "Who knows what the next election could come out. It could end up being down the same path we are right now. I mean, you just don't know."

Lessons learned, and apologies

Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Maryland Democrat who is a member of the Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack, noted that Ayres' wife had joined him at the hearing and said the entire experience must have been "very difficult on you both."

Raskin asked Ayres what lessons he wanted the American people to learn from what happened to him.

"The biggest thing is I consider myself a family man and I love my country," Ayres replied. "I don't think any one man is any bigger than either of those."

Ayres said many people like him dive into politics with horse blinders on.

"The biggest thing for me is to take the blinders off and make sure you step back and see what's going on — before it's too late."

Ayres is among more than 35 Ohioans and a total of about 845 defendants who have been criminally charged in connection with the Jan. 6, 2021 attack. Many have been identified with the help of online, would-be detectives, though more than 300 other suspects captured in photos and videos entering the Capitol that day remain unidentified on the FBI's website.

Stephen Ayres, 39, of Champion Township, Trumbull County,  apologizes to two law enforcement who defended the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021 after his testimony Tuesday before the House Select Committee investigating the attack.

After his testimony, Ayres apologized to two law enforcement officers in the hearing room who helped defend the Capitol: former Capitol police officer Aquilino Gonell and Washington Metropolitan Police Officer Daniel Hodges.

Hodges told USA TODAY that he asked Ayres whether he was sorry for his participation in the riot, and Ayres responded, "Yes."

"I said, ‘I hope so.’" Hodges said. "...I have to believe that people can change."

Ayres testified Tuesday alongside Jason Van Tatenhove, who said he left work as a freelance journalist to take a job as an associate editor of the webpage 

 

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