Amanda Kondrat’yev was sentenced to 15 days in federal custody on Monday for throwing a drink at Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL).
Police say Kondrat’yev was holding a protest sign that read “Gaetz – wipe the blood from your hands, A+ rating – NRA, save our kids vote Gaetz out in 2020” when she hurled a “red drink” that struck Rep. Matt Gaetz in the chest as he was leaving a June 1 event at Brewhaha, a Pensacola restaurant.
After throwing the drink, Kondrat’yev attempted to flee the scene. She was detained by the special detail officer assigned to the congressman. Notably, this was not Kondrat’yev’s first link to Gaetz. She ran as a Democrat contender for his seat in 2016 but later withdrew.
In August, Kondrat’yev pleaded guilty to “assault on a member of Congress.” Her lawyer, Eric Stevenson, told NBC News he was “disappointed that Mr. Gaetz pushed for imprisonment as a sentence” but was grateful that the judge recognized that Kondrat’yev’s “aberrant behavior” did not reflect her character. “While we were asking for no jail time, we are glad the judge went below the guidelines,” Stevenson said.
In a pre-sentencing statement, Gaetz said:
My supporters are just as passionate as my opponents. They have the capability to be violent too. My efforts to ensure ALL participants remain nonviolent are undermined greatly by the Defendant’s actions.
Only incarceration allows me to reinforce to my supporters and opponents alike that Free Speech is welcomed — but assault will not be tolerated.
Kondrat’yev could have faced up to a year of incarceration. She will instead begin her 15-day stint on December 2 and be heading home just in time for the holidays.