Political News

Woman charged in US Capitol riot can take trip to Mexico, federal judge says

Posted February 5, 2021 6:24 p.m. EST

— A Texas florist charged in connection with the US Capitol insurrection will be allowed to go to Mexico later this month, a federal judge ruled Friday.

The case involving Jenny Cudd got national attention this week after she wrote to a judge asking for permission to visit Riviera Maya, Mexico, for a four-day retreat this month.

On Friday, Judge Trevor N. McFadden of the DC District Court granted her request. McFadden, a Trump appointee, noted that the Justice Department did not oppose Cudd's request to visit Mexico.

"The Court also notes (Cudd) has no criminal history and there is no evidence before the Court suggesting the Defendant is a flight risk or poses a danger to others," McFadden wrote in a written order.

Cudd is a flower shop owner and unsuccessful mayoral candidate from Midland, Texas. She was charged with two misdemeanors -- knowingly entering a restricted building and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds -- and was released shortly after her arrest in January.

The Justice Department didn't try to keep her in jail before trial, an aggressive move prosecutors reserved for the handful of riot-related defendants accused of violent crimes and conspiracies.

A lawyer representing Cudd previously told CNN she plans to plead not guilty. Her lawyers have also said in court filings that she is complying with all the court-ordered conditions of release.

Cudd's lawyers have previously said in court filings that even before the Capitol attack, she was planning to visit Riviera Maya, a tourist hotspot near Cancun that has stayed busy during the pandemic.

In court filings, the Justice Department has described Cudd as unrepentant for her role in the insurrection, citing her comments in Facebook posts and interviews shortly after the riot.

"F--- yes, I am proud of my actions, I f---ing charged the Capitol today with patriots today. Hell, yes, I am proud of my actions," Cudd said in the Facebook video, according to court records.

In the livestream, Cudd allegedly detailed how she "pushed and pushed" and "got up to the top of the Capitol." She claimed "there was a door open and we went inside," and later was able to "break down the Nancy Pelosi's office door," referring to the Democratic speaker of the House.

"I would absolutely do it again," Cudd said in a local news interview two days after the insurrection, according to court documents, referring to the storming of the Capitol building.

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