A federal prosecutor began the first trial arising from the Jan. 6 Capitol riot by detailing the assault on Congress’ certification of the election and painting the defendant as “the tip of this mob’s spear.”

“On Jan. 6 of 2021 the United State Capitol, the heart of democracy in our country, the massive white building across the street from where you’re sitting, was attacked by a mob in what was the worst assault on the Capitol since 1812,” assistant U.S. attorney Jeffrey Nestler told the jury seated at the D.C. federal courthouse, which sits within view of the Capitol building.

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