Counsel rests, jury set to deliberate verdict of former Rocky Mount police officer in Capitol riot trial

Closing arguments will take place on Friday

Closing arguments will take place on Friday

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Va. – On the third day of the trial against former Rocky Mount police officer Thomas Robertson, the government and defense rested, which sets up the final stage of the trial — jury deliberations.

Robertson is charged for his actions during the January 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol.

The government called on about ten witnesses to testify about the events of that day and the investigation into them.

Jacob Fracker, a former police officer with the Rocky Mount police department, testified against his former sergeant. He sat on the stand for two days.

Thursday, the defense cross-examined Fracker who explained Robertson gave him $30,000 to help him out since they lost their jobs as officers. He also testified Robertson helped pay for his early legal fees.

Robertson and Fracker were like father and son.

The government says Robertson got rid of his and Fracker’s cell phones to hide them from authorities during their opening statements.

Fracker told the court during the cross that he was scared for police to take custody of his phone, saying it would further incriminate him. However, the defense got him to admit there was nothing new on the phone to find since he shared all of his pictures and videos to the cloud or posted them on Facebook.

The government rested at 2 p.m. Thursday.

Two character witnesses were called by the defense. Both stated they’d seen Robertson use a cane or walking stick. He was injured while serving in the military.

Prosecutors asked witnesses about the stick because they say it proves Robertson used his police training while committing crimes, emphasizing his awareness of his unlawful behavior.

The judge delivered instructions to the jury before adjourning for the day.

Closing arguments are Friday.


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McKinley Strother joined the WSLS 10 News team in June 2020. He anchors 10 News at 6 and 11 on Saturdays and Sundays and you'll also catch him reporting during the week.