Richard Barnett, an Arkansas man who gained media attention for posing with his feet up on then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s desk during the Capitol riot in January 2021 was found guilty of a felony Monday.
He faces up to 47 years in prison and is expected to be sentenced May 3.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 62-year-old Barnett “disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress convened to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the presidential election,” along with other rioters at the Capitol.
Now – a little over two years after the deadly riot at the Capitol – more than 950 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for allegedly committing crimes related to the breach. More than 284 individuals have been charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement.
Government evidence revealed that Barnett entered Pelosi’s restricted office area on Jan. 6, 2021, and was photographed with his feet on the Democrat lawmaker’s furniture. These photos made their way on to various social media platforms.
“A search of law enforcement databases confirmed that the individual in the news photographs did in fact appear to be Barnett,” said the Justice Department.
Further evidence “established that Barnett carried a Zap Hike ‘N Strike Walking Staff with spike electrodes with him as he traveled through the Capitol,” and at one point exposed the electrodes to a Metropolitan Police Officer. According to a description of a Zap walking stick from Bass Pro Shops, some models deliver “950,000 volts of knock down power, causing loss of muscle control and disorientation that bring attackers to their knees and makes them incapable of further aggression.”
During his encounter with the police officer, Barnett “threatened to call in the mob and push through the line of officers,” if they did not go into Pelosi’s office and get a flag that he left there.
U.S. Capitol Police and the FBI’s Little Rock, Arkansas and Washington Field Offices investigated the case with the assistance of the Justice Department’s National Security Division.
Barnett, of Gravette, Ark., was arrested just days after the riot on Jan. 8, 2021 in Little Rock, Ark. U.S. He was charged with: obstruction of an official proceeding, interfering with a police officer during a civil disorder, entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds with a dangerous or deadly weapon, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a dangerous weapon, all felonies.
Ultimately, Barnett was found guilty of all charges Monday. Additionally, he was found guilty of entering and remaining in certain rooms in a capitol building, disorderly conduct in a capitol building, theft of government property and parading or demonstrating in a capitol building.
An investigation into the riot remains ongoing. Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit tips.fbi.gov.