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Capitol protester who broke into Nancy Pelosi’s office complains in court over continued jailing

Richard Barnett, one of the more infamous participants in the January 6 riot at the Capitol after he broke into Nancy Pelosi‘s office and put his feet on her desk, yelled about his perceived unfair imprisonment during a court hearing on Thursday.

He said other people involved in the insurrection have been let out of jail, but that he’s still being held. 

‘I’ve been here a long time … another month … it’s not fair,’ he yelled, according to KNWA. ‘You’re letting everyone else out … I need help.’   

The 60-year-old had a virtual court appearance with Judge Christopher Cooper of Federal District Court in Washington. 

The judge pushed off a decision until May 4 – at which point Barnett started screaming.  

Richard Barnett put his feet up on Nancy Pelosi’s desk during the Capitol riot. He isn’t putting his feet up in jail, as he threw a tantrum after failing to secure his release on Thursday

The judge didn’t budge – and noted that his lawyers can file a new bail motion.   

A federal magistrate judge in Arkansas had previously approved Barnett’s release, but it was blocked by a federal judge at the end of January.

During that hearing, US District Chief Judge Beryl Howell called Barnett ‘entitled’ and ‘dangerous,’ as reported by The Washington Post.

Unlike some others who were involved in the riots who have been let out upon waiting trial, Howell said Barnett came to the Capitol ‘prepared with a weapon and cloaked with entitlement’ and ‘seemed happy to be one of the stars of this revolt’ – only to attempt to evade law enforcement after leaving.

At the January hearing, the judge read a letter Barnett had left on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s desk, which was said to be vulgar – and ‘dangerous,’ she said. 

If his counsel requested bail again, it would likely trigger a new hearing for the man best known for putting his feet up on Pelosi’s desk in January after entering with a cattle prod.     

Barnett posed for a photo reclining in the House Speaker’s chair before he later returned to a crowd of supporters outside and flashed a hand-written envelope he had stolen from her desk.

Barnett has pleaded not guilty to aiding and abetting, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, theft of government property, and parading or demonstrating in a Capitol building. 

Barnett also was seen in pictures taking a piece of mail from Nancy Pelosi's office

Barnett also was seen in pictures taking a piece of mail from Nancy Pelosi’s office

Barnett has pled not guilty to all charges he's facing, including theft of government property

Barnett has pled not guilty to all charges he’s facing, including theft of government property

During the January hearing, Barnett said he had ‘some very honest and simple explanations’ and ‘I am a good man.’

Barnett was first jailed when he voluntarily surrendered to the FBI in Bentonville, Arkansas on January 8, almost two months ago.

Barnett is a native of Gravette in northwest Arkansas. On social media, he identifies as a Trump supporter, a gun rights advocate, and white nationalist.

Barnett has been in jail since January 8, when he surrendered to the FBI in Arkansas

Barnett has been in jail since January 8, when he surrendered to the FBI in Arkansas

The riot at the Capitol on January 6 left five dead and resulted in hundreds of people charged for violently breaching the building.

Meanwhile, a U.S. judge on Wednesday ordered the release of a prominent member of the far-right Proud Boys group while he awaits trial on charges stemming from his role in the storming of the U.S. Capitol.

Calling her decision a ‘close call,’ Howell – the same judge in Barnett’s January hearing – said the U.S. government failed to show that Ethan Nordean posed such a danger to the public that he must be jailed while his case unfolds.

During the court hearing, Howell said federal prosecutors had ‘backtracked’ and failed to substantiate allegations that Nordean was a ringleader of the attack.

Howell said other Proud Boys members have been released pending trial, and that she needed to be consistent in her rulings.

The Justice Department has charged nearly 20 members or associates of the Proud Boys in the Capitol breach, and it has accused several members of spearheading early efforts to stampede police and break in to the building.

While some protesters have been released pending their trials, others have remained confined for the time being.

Jacob Chansley, the QAnon Shaman, remains in jail, despite attempts to secure a release on either medical or religious grounds.

He also attempted to garner a pardon from Donald Trump before the president left office, but failed to secure his release. 


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