Two Proud Boys Sentenced To 4 Years In Prison For UES Brawl
Two members of the Proud Boys, a far-right hate group, will spend four years in prison for their role in a street brawl outside the state’s Republican headquarters on the Upper East Side last year.
Maxwell Hare, 27, and John Kinsman, 39, were both sentenced by State Supreme Court Judge Mark Dwyer on Tuesday. “I know enough about history to know what happened in Europe in the ’30s,” the judge said, according to the Times. The men were convicted in August on attempted gang assault, attempted assault, and rioting charges
According to prosecutors with the Manhattan D.A.’s office, Hare and Kisman led the violent confrontation with anti-fascist protesters last October, following an appearance by Proud Boys leader Gavin McInnes at the Metropolitan Republican Club. The lengthy sentence was handed down without testimony from the victims of the beating, who refused to speak with police at the scene and were never identified.
Bystander footage of the event showed roughly a dozen Proud Boys and skinheads swarming a smaller group of protesters, punching and kicking them while yelling homophobic slurs. After the videos sparked significant public outcry, a total of ten Proud Boys were ultimately charged for their role in the melee.
Prosecutors had requested five years in prison for both Proud Boys, on the grounds that Hare threw the first punch, while Kinsman was the most vicious. “The defendants transformed a quiet, residential street into the site of a battle-royale, kicking and beating four individuals in a brutal act of political violence,” Vance said, following the conviction.
Attorneys for both defendants, meanwhile argued that their clients were acting in self-defense. At one point, Kinsman’s lawyer, Jack Goldberg, reportedly referred to the prosecution as the “New York County district Antifa office.”
On Tuesday, Judge Dwyer seemingly made reference to McInnes, the Proud Boys leader, who’d spent the evening of the brawl reenacting the assassination of a Japanese socialist for the Republican crowd. “It’s a shame when some people jump up and down on a platform,” Dwyer said, “and their followers, their soldiers, get in trouble.”
McInnes did not respond to Gothamist’s request for comment.