Accused U.S. Capitol attacker Cody Mattice to be released from custody
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The Hilton man facing federal criminal charges in connection to the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol could be released from custody as soon as Monday.
At a hearing Friday afternoon a judge set condition for Cody Mattice’s release pending any further motions to keep him behind bars.
United States District Court Judge Mark Pedersen agreed with the federal public defender’s request to release Mattice.
Earlier this week Mattice’s attorney argued he should be released ahead of Friday’s detention hearing. Mattice has been kept behind bars because federal prosecutors deemed him to be both a flight risk, and a danger to the community.
Friday afternoon, the judge disagreed, and used the terms of the State’s Criminal Justice Reform Act to render his decision of a conditional release. Under the terms, Mattice cannot commit any other crimes, and he must remain under house arrest unless leaving for an approved appointment or work. Mattice cannot possess any firearms, and can’t have any contact with co-defendant James Mault.
Mattice is accused of committing several criminal offenses during the January 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. His family, and friends packed one side of the small courtroom, and at the end of the hearing we talked to his Aunt Rebecca Evert who was overjoyed by the judge’s decision.
"He’s just happy that he is you know being seen in a better light and knowing that he is not a danger , or threat to society. He’s not a flight risk, he’s a great person, and we’re all hopeful, and god is with us, and very, very happy," said Evert.
Mattice’s case will be transferred to Federal Court in Washington D.C. sometime next week.
Mattice,28, was initially in court Tuesday for a detention hearing because government prosecutors felt he was a flight risk, and a danger to the community. No decision was made at the time because the judge wanted to review video evidence the government says it has that proves Mattice was at the U.S. Capital on Jan. 6 and participated in the riot.
That was before documents containing photos, videos, and the narrative that makes up the government’s case against him and James Mault of Brockport were released. The unsealed documents contain evidence prosecutors say shows Mattice tearing down a barrier and spraying pepper spray into a tunnel where police officers were stationed.
Despite the document release, Federal Public Defender Wedade Abdallah argued the allegations against Mattice took place nine months ago, and that his family ties, strong community ties, a lack of criminal history, and a lack of any violent history are all reasons he should be let go.
If he were to be released, Abdallah says Mattice would have to avoid violating the law, cooperate with DNA sample collections. and must appear in court when called upon, among other moves. It falls in line with the defense’s previous request, saying that if Mattice was going to leave town or do anything dangerous he would have done so by now.
HOW WE GOT HERE
During a search warrant at his home on Trimmer Road in Hilton last Thursday, his cell phone was seized. The government said there is a text on his cell phone that says "I maced a cop ". Also on that phone, when asked by a friend why he stormed the Capital, Mattice allegedly said Trump told us to because of the fraud.
The warrant has a list of charges on it detailing the alleged connection to the riots at the Capitol. Those charges include: weapons offenses, assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers using a dangerous weapon, and act of physical violence in the U.S. Capitol.
The defense said they have not been able to verify that the cell phone belongs to Mattice, or that no one else has used it to send or receive messages.
Dominic Pezzola, 43, from Rochester, is also accused of being in the mob that overran the Capitol. The U.S. Attorney’s office says Pezzola was recognized in video clips using a stolen police riot shield and smashed a window to get inside the capitol.
Mattice will appear at 2 p.m.