Jacob Chansley, the spear-carrying Jan. 6 rioter whose horned fur hat, bare chest and face paint made him one of the more recognizable figures in the assault on the Capitol, was sentenced Wednesday to 41 months in prison.

Chansley, who pleaded guilty to a felony charge of obstructing an official proceeding, was among the first rioters to enter the building. He has acknowledged using a bullhorn to rile up the mob, offering thanks in a prayer while in the Senate for having the chance to get rid of traitors and scratching out a threatening note to Vice President Mike Pence saying, “It’s Only A Matter of Time. Justice Is Coming!”

Though he isn’t accused of violence, prosecutors say Chansley, of Arizona, was the “public face of the Capitol riot” who went into the attack with a weapon, ignored repeated police orders to leave the building and gloated about his actions in the days immediately after the attack.

Before he was sentenced, Chansley told U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth it was wrong for him to enter the Capitol and that he accepts responsibility for his actions. He emphasized he wasn’t an insurrectionist and is troubled with the way he was portrayed in news stories in the aftermath of the riot.

“I have no excuse,” Chansley said. “No excuses whatsoever. My behavior is indefensible.”

The judge said Chansley’s remorse appeared to be genuine but noted the seriousness of his actions in the Capitol. “What you did was terrible,” Lamberth said. “You made yourself the center of the riot.”

The image of Chansley holding a flagpole topped with a spear tip and looking as if he were howling was one of the most striking to emerge from the riot. He previously called himself the “QAnon Shaman” but has since repudiated the QAnon movement, which is centered on the baseless belief that former President Donald Trump was fighting a cabal of Satan-worshipping, child sex trafficking cannibals.

He is among 650 people charged in the riot that forced lawmakers into hiding as they were meeting to certify President Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory. More than 120 defendants have pleaded guilty, mostly to misdemeanor charges of demonstrating in the Capitol that carry a maximum of six months in prison.

Chansley and Scott Fairlamb, a New Jersey gym owner sentenced last week for punching a police officer during the attack, have received the longest prison sentences out of the 38 Capitol riot defendants who been punished so far.

Chansley, who has been in jail for 10 months, sought to be sentenced to time served. His lawyer, Albert Watkins, said his client has longstanding mental health problems that were worsened by being held in solitary confinement due to COVID-19 protocols and is in dire need of mental health treatment.

In the year before the Capitol riot, Chansley appeared in costume at pro-Trump events, protests over face mask requirements and at a gathering of Trump supporters in November 2020 outside an election office in downtown Phoenix where votes from the presidential race were being counted.

His attorney has said Chansley was “horrendously smitten” by Trump and believed like other rioters that Trump had called him to the Capitol, but later felt betrayed after Trump refused to grant him and others who participated in the insurrection a pardon.

Watkins has said Chansley had been under pressure from family members not to plead guilty because they believed Trump would be reinstated as president and pardon him.

After spending his first month in jail, Chansley said he reevaluated his life, felt regret for having stormed the building and apologized for causing fear in others.

He twice quit eating while in jail and lost 20 pounds (9 kilograms) until he was given organic food.

The judge had previously rejected Chansley’s claims that the six-foot flagpole he carried during the riot wasn’t a weapon and that the metal spear tip was an ornament, saying the sharpened six-inch point could have been used to stab people from a distance.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

(7) comments

gjthuro

OMG not that ..spear and horns...wonder why no one at A/P has anything to say about the 500+ Americans left behind in Afghan....we know why biden gang is silent but one would think the media would be concerned...guess that was the media of old

Dwasserba

“.…Chansley had been under pressure from family members not to plead guilty because they believed Trump would be reinstated as president and pardon him.” 🤦‍♀️

newspostreader

I'm curious how he's doing with that jail food. He is the one where his mother went to the media because he has special dietary needs and claimed he had gone days without food. Well, here is an idea - if you need special food, don't do things that will land you in jail.

phydeaux994

All of these Insurrectionists behind bars at the D.C. jail are whining that the conditions there are “inhuman”. Waaa Waaa Waaa

jth7100

The outfit alone should carry that sentence.

Hayduke2

Appropriate!

bnick467

Less than 3 1/2 years for attempting to overthrow the government? Hardly a slap on the wrist, given the crime.

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