Richard Barnett, the man who infamously put his feet on former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s desk during the attack on the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, has been sentenced to four and a half years in prison after being convicted by a jury in January of eight charges, including civil disorder. The district judge on the case, Christopher Cooper, said, “For better or for worse, you’ve become one of the faces of January 6, and I think you’ve enjoyed that.” Barnett faced up to 20 years in prison for the worst charge.
Court documents reveal that Barnett was in Pelosi’s office for 10 minutes and wrote a note to her calling her a “b**ch.” During his time there, he also had his feet up on her desk and carried a stun gun in his pants. Prosecutors say Barnett took an envelope from the office and left the Capitol showing it to others like it was a “trophy.”
Prosecutors allege that Barnett also made his way to the Capitol Rotunda and joined in with other rioters in pushing against law enforcement officers. Judge Cooper said, “I shudder to think what would have happened if those staffers were there, or God forbid, the Speaker.” Barnett has not shown any remorse for his actions on that day, which has impacted the length of his sentence.
Prosecutor Alison Prout said during the trial, “The defendant continues to say that his conduct was similar of a 4-year-old temper tantrum.” During sentencing, Barnett addressed the court stating that he plans to appeal his case and that he refuses to apologize for actions he believes he did not commit during the riot.
Barnett claims he was pushed into the Capitol during the riot and was looking for a restroom inside the building. He testified during his trial and said he was admiring all the artwork in his path. Barnett did not comment on his sentencing, but his wife reportedly broke down in tears as the couple left the courtroom.