News, Culture & Society

Arpiring male model who set fire at Comet Ping Pong pizza shop is sentenced to four years in prison 

A male model who has a history of mental illness was sentenced to four years in prison for setting fire to Comet Ping Pong pizza shop – four years after it was targeted in the PizzaGate scandal in 2016.

Ryan Jaselskis, 23, pleaded guilty in December to arson and assault on a police officer. The latter charge stemmed from a fight he had with a US Park Police officer who detained him at the Washington Monument. 

Both prosecutors and defense attorneys agreed to the sentence that was then accepted by US District Judge Timothy J Kelly, the Washington Post reports.

The latter charge stemmed from a fight he had with a US Park Police officer who detained him at the Washington Monument

Ryan Jaselskis, 23, pleaded guilty in December to arson and assault on a police officer. The latter charge stemmed from a fight he had with a US Park Police officer who detained him at the Washington Monument.

Judge Kelly shared in his ruling that the restaurant had been targeted in an unrelated attack in 2016 that made Jaselskis's crime 'that much more damaging'

Judge Kelly shared in his ruling that the restaurant had been targeted in an unrelated attack in 2016 that made Jaselskis’s crime ‘that much more damaging’

Kelly shared in his ruling that the popular restaurant had been targeted in an unrelated attack in 2016 that made Jaselskis’s crime ‘that much more damaging.’ 

In the 2016 attack, Edgar Maddison Welch entered the pizzeria with an AR-15 rifle to investigate a viral internet rumor - 'Pizzagate' -about a child sex ring operating in the eatery's basement

In the 2016 attack, Edgar Maddison Welch entered the pizzeria with an AR-15 rifle to investigate a viral internet rumor – ‘Pizzagate’ -about a child sex ring operating in the eatery’s basement

In the 2016 attack, Edgar Maddison Welch entered the pizzeria with an AR-15 rifle to investigate a viral internet rumor – ‘Pizzagate’ -about a child sex ring operating in the eatery’s basement.

A motive has not been determined in Jaselskis’s case but prosecutors felt that he needed a similar sentence as Welch’s. 

Assistant US Attorneys Dineen A Baker and Andrew Floyrd wrote that the cases were ‘similarly situated.’

The defendants attorneys argued that their client was actually ‘suffering from a diagnosed mental illness’ and not an ill motive.  

The unfounded ‘pizzagate’ conspiracy made headline news in December 2016 when Edgar Maddison Welch was arrested after he traveled to DC, went to Comet Ping Pong and fired multiple shots from his AR-15 assault rifle inside while demanding the truth about the conspiracy. 

The conspiracy, which claimed that the restaurant sheltered a child sex abuse ring run by Hillary Clinton and her former campaign chief of staff, John Podesta, apparently originated on Twitter and led Welch, of Salisbury, North Carolina, to investigate the claims. Welch surrendering to police on December 4, 2016

The conspiracy, which claimed that the restaurant sheltered a child sex abuse ring run by Hillary Clinton and her former campaign chief of staff, John Podesta, apparently originated on Twitter and led Welch, of Salisbury, North Carolina, to investigate the claims. Welch surrendering to police on December 4, 2016

The conspiracy, which claimed that the restaurant sheltered a child sex abuse ring run by Hillary Clinton and her former campaign chief of staff, John Podesta, apparently originated on Twitter and led Welch, of Salisbury, North Carolina, to investigate the claims. 

Welch later pleaded guilty to illegally transporting firearms over state lines and assault with a dangerous weapon.

There has been no evidence of the so-called abuse, no investigation and no victims who have come forward claiming to have suffered abuse. Welch was sentenced to four years in prison on June 22, 2017.

A motive has not been determined in Jaselskis's case but prosecutors felt that he needed a similar sentence as Welch's

A motive has not been determined in Jaselskis’s case but prosecutors felt that he needed a similar sentence as Welch’s

At the time of Welch’s sentencing, Comet Ping Pong owner James Alfantis told the court that he hoped the incident would be remembered as an aberration when ‘lies were seen as real and our social fabric had frayed. 

He said his workers were devastated after the latest event.  

'My cooks worked through the experience of a gunman, and then they worked through the experience of an arsonist,' Alefantis said on Thursday. 'There is a sense of security that will no longer exist

 ‘My cooks worked through the experience of a gunman, and then they worked through the experience of an arsonist,’ Alefantis said on Thursday. ‘There is a sense of security that will no longer exist

‘My cooks worked through the experience of a gunman, and then they worked through the experience of an arsonist,’ Alefantis said on Thursday. ‘There is a sense of security that will no longer exist.

‘We have been consistently on guard for attacks,’ he said, noting his staff has had to ‘live in fear of customers walking through the front door.’

David Walker Bos, Jaselskis’s attorney, said he couldn’t ‘imagine being in the shoes of Mr Alfefantis.’ However he asked the owner to understand that the defendant ‘was somebody who at the time was laboring under pretty severe mental health issues.’  

 ‘Even today he’s not really sure what led him to Comet pizza that night. But he knows what he did was wrong,’ Bos added.

Jaselskis told Alefantis that he was ‘so, so sorry.’  

‘I am taking full responsibility for my actions,’ he said. ‘It has never been in my nature to harm anyone or engage in violence. . . . It breaks my heart that I acted in such a manner that goes completely against my upbringing and values.’

Only the judge was in the courtroom during the hearing.  

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk