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A retired Arkansas firefighter who placed his feet on Democrat Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) desk on January 6, 2021, has been sentenced to over four years in prison after he was convicted of felony charges of civil disorder and obstruction of an official proceeding.
Richard “Bigo” Barnett was given 54 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper and three years of supervised release and a $2,000 fine. Additional charges included theft of government property, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon, and parading or demonstrating in a capitol building.
Barnett, 62, was accused of carrying a stun device into the Capitol, which he said had no batteries on January 6.
“All the folks who follow ‘Bigo’ need to know the actions of January 6 cannot be repeated without some serious repercussions,” Cooper said during the sentencing. The picture of Barnett with his feet on Pelosi’s desk quickly became famous, something he said he did after photographers told him to “act natural.”
After he left the office, Barnett said that he left Pelosi a note on her desk.
“I did not steal it,” Barnett said, holding an envelope with Pelosi’s letterhead on it. “I bled on it because they were macing me and I couldn’t f***ing see so I figured I am in her office. I got blood on her office. I put a quarter on her desk even though she ain’t f***ing worth it. And I left a note on her desk that says, ‘Nancy, Bigo was here you b***.’”
Here’s Mr. Barnett, who goes by “Bigo,” telling the story in his own words pic.twitter.com/oSyKiCDXgy
— Matthew Rosenberg (@AllMattNYT) January 6, 2021
There was later controversy over what word Barnett used on the note to describe Pelosi, with his lawyers arguing that he had written something less vulgar. Barnett told the court that he was sorry for his actions.
“I’ve made mistakes. I have made mistakes. And I regret those mistakes. I’ve gotten confused in my testimony. I went through hell up there. The officers went through hell up there. It was a horrible, horrible day,” he said.
Joseph D. McBride, Barnett’s defense lawyer, argued that his client was being treated unfairly.
“They have literally made a federal case out of an act of stupidity that could have been dispensed with a ticket and a fine,” he said. “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, this is the government that our forefathers warned us about.”