The lawyer for the “QAnon shaman” who was part of the deadly siege of the Capitol last week publicly petitioned President Donald Trump on Thursday to pardon his client.
In an interview on CNN, attorney Albert Watkins said his client, Jacob Chansley, “felt like he was answering the call of our president” when he stormed the nation’s seat of government last Wednesday during a riot that resulted in the deaths of at least five people.
Chansley, a 33-year-old man from Phoenix also known as Jake Angeli, was one of the most recognizable perpetrators of the Capitol siege. He carried a spear, wore a furry horned headdress and painted his face in shades of red, white and blue.
On Tuesday, Chansley became one of the first three people indicted by federal prosecutors in connection with the violence at the Capitol. He was charged with a felony violation of the Federal Anti-Riot Act, as well as obstruction of Congress and other offenses.
In a filing on Thursday, prosecutors said Chansley was as “an active participant in” and “the most prominent symbol of” what they described as a “violent insurrection.” Prosecutors also said Chansley had expressed his intention of returning to Washington, D.C., for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration next week.
Three of the key advisers who helped engineer Donald Trump’s’ rise to the presidency in 2016, and who fell from grace under the weight of federal criminal charges, resurfaced during Trump’s final days in office to help engineer his ill-fated attempt to cling to power.
Roger Stone, Steve Bannon, and retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn all participated in efforts to promote the Jan. 6 “Stop the Steal” event that ultimately devolved into a riotous and deadly melee at the United States Capitol, leaving five dead and causing Trump to become the only president to be impeached for a second time.
While none of them spoke at the actual rally, Stone whipped up a crowd of Trump supporters in Washington the night before, telling them the president’s enemies sought “nothing less than the heist of the 2020 election.”
“And we say, No way!” Stone said at the Jan. 5 rally.
Flynn promoted the so-called “Jericho March,” a rally of Christians to “pray, march, fast, and rally for election integrity,” according to the group’s website, that also took place on Jan. 6 in the shadow of the Capitol. In the weeks leading up to the event, Flynn told his supporters that they would “need to be fearless as Americans.”
Speaking at a Dec. 12 rally in Washington to promote the Trump effort to overturn the election, Flynn told supporters they had reached a “crucible moment” and “there has to be sacrifice.” [Continue reading…]