Man who wanted to see Trump gets time served in standoff
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A Washington state man who said he was traveling to see President Donald Trump has been sentenced to time served for assaulting Secret Service special agents in West Virginia.
Joshua Wills, 31, of Bremerton, Washington, was sentenced in federal court in Charleston to the 23 months already served since his arrest in November 2018, U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart said Tuesday.
“Federal, state and local law enforcement put themselves in harm’s way to protect each and every one of us,” Stuart said in a statement. “Assaults on our Guardians of Justice will always be prosecuted by this U.S. Attorney.”
Wills pleaded guilty in September to assaulting, resisting or impeding federal officers. He admitted in court that he intended to drive to the nation’s capital to meet the president. The Secret Service started investigating Wills after receiving reports he had a katana sword on his trip, prosecutors said.
Wills was arrested after a standoff at a campground, where he had gone to stay overnight and finish a PowerPoint presentation for Trump, according to court documents.
Three Secret Service agents and local police officers confronted Wills in the park. They spoke with him for about 30 minutes, then told him he was under arrest.
“Wills pulled out his sword and brandished it at us,” Secret Service Special Agent Thomas Fleming wrote in a criminal complaint. “Officers fired two non-lethal shotgun rounds to incapacitate Wills and he was wrestled to the ground.”
Wills’ father had earlier told an agent his son was not a threat to the president and in fact worshipped Trump, the complaint said. His plan was to stand outside the White House gate with his sword strapped to his side. He wanted to deliver some type of evidence to the president in a package of smoked salmon from Seattle’s Pike Place Market, according to the complaint.
The charge had carried a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.