An Arkansas man who grew to become infamous for placing his foot on a desk in Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s workplace through the assault on the Capitol by supporters of President Donald J. Trump was sentenced on Wednesday to 4 and a half years in jail.
The person, Richard “Bigo” Barnett, was discovered responsible at a trial in January of eight legal offenses, together with interfering with legislation enforcement throughout a civil dysfunction and obstructing the certification of the 2020 election that came about on the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
After deliberating for lower than three hours, a jury in Federal District Court docket in Washington rejected Mr. Barnett’s testimony that he had ended up in Ms. Pelosi’s workplace suite whereas on the lookout for a toilet and that the 950,000-volt stun gun he was carrying that day was not working.
Prosecutors argued through the trial that Mr. Barnett, 63, arrived on the Capitol “ready for violence” and meaning to cease Mr. Trump from leaving workplace after shedding the 2020 election.
In court docket papers filed earlier than the sentencing listening to, prosecutors accused Mr. Barnett of in search of to revenue from his case by promoting autographed photographs of himself leaning again along with his foot on a desk in Ms. Pelosi’s workplace and by contemplating in search of copyright protections for an obscene observe he left Ms. Pelosi that day, studying partly, “Hey Nancy, Bigo was right here.”
On Wednesday, prosecutors sought to emphasise the lasting scars inflicted by the rioters. They cited Emily Berret, a workers member for Ms. Pelosi who recalled that of eight colleagues who have been trapped contained in the speaker’s workplace when the mob first overwhelmed the Capitol, six exited public service shortly thereafter.
Prosecutors additionally accused Mr. Barnett of mendacity a number of occasions in testimony throughout his trial, including that he confirmed “brazen disrespect for each type of authority he encountered.”
“Barnett acknowledges no authority however himself and is prepared to do ‘no matter it takes’ to get what he needs,” the prosecutors wrote, “even when it requires harming others, stealing or breaking the legislation.”
Simply earlier than issuing the sentence, Choose Christopher Cooper mentioned he was dismayed by the best way Mr. Barnett had sought to money in on his notoriety.
“You’re 63 years previous; you’re too previous for this nonsense,” he mentioned. “However for higher or worse you may have grow to be one of many faces of Jan. 6, and I feel you take pleasure in it.”
Mr. Barnett was among the many first defendants arrested in reference to the Jan. 6 assault and rapidly grew to become one of many best-known rioters, together with figures like Jacob Chansley, the so-called QAnon Shaman, who stormed the constructing in a horned helmet and was later sentenced to 41 months in prison.
Mr. Barnett has additionally often and vocally criticized the Justice Division for overreaching in its efforts to analyze the Capitol assault. He has additionally accused the cops who defended lawmakers that day of instigating the assault on the constructing through the use of what he has described as extreme power.
His attorneys, Jonathan Gross and Bradford Geyer, had requested Choose Cooper to condemn Mr. Barnett to just one 12 months in jail and to present him credit score for the almost 4 months he spent behind bars earlier than his trial. The attorneys mentioned in court docket papers that Mr. Barnett nonetheless believed the police used a “disproportionate response” through the assault.
“Mr. Barnett is outspoken about his political beliefs and has attended dozens of rallies in his life, however was at all times peaceable, by no means violent,” the attorneys wrote.
Greater than 480 individuals have been sentenced to this point in reference to the Capitol assault, and about 275 are serving at the least a while in jail, Justice Division officers say. The phrases have ranged from a high of 14 years to solely days behind bars.