Richard Barnett: Capitol Rioter Who Posed With His Feet Up on Nancy Pelosi's Desk Sentenced to 7 Years in Prison?

A social media user is claiming Richard Barnett's lawyers agreed a plea deal with prosecutors that would see him spend 82 months in prison over his involvement in the U.S. Capitol riot.

Richard Barnett, the man who was pictured with his feet on a desk in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office and left her an insulting note during the storming of the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters on Jan. 6, 2021, is heading to prison, according to a claim that is being circulated on social media.

He was one of around a thousand Trump supporters who invaded the federal building in an apparent attempt to block the Congress from affirming the outcome of the 2020 election, which they claimed President Joe Biden won fraudulently. Barnett was photographed in Pelosi's office and also wrote "biatd" – a misspelling of the insult "bitch" on a piece of stationery on her desk.

Richard Barnett
Richard Barnett photographed in Nancy Pelosi's office on Jan. 6, 2021. Twitter

A Twitter user posted the infamous photo of Barnett inside Pelosi's office along with a caption stating that he had been sentenced to seven years in prison without parole after his lawyers worked out a plea deal with prosecutors.

"SEVEN YEARS IN FEDERAL PRISON," the post read, "As Richard Barnett's family burned through their life's savings in legal fees, sold both their cars and their house ...he has now turned to a Public Defender who has worked out a plea deal of 82 months NO PAROLE. I hope this idiot enjoyed himself."


Barnett is facing federal charges for his involvement in the riot, including obstruction of an official proceeding; "disorderly and disruptive conduct" in a restricted building or grounds, as well as disorderly conduct in a Capitol building; and theft of government property among others. He has pleaded not guilty.

In late April 2021, news outlets including the Washington Post reported that Barnett had been released from prison to await further court proceedings from home.

Barnett was ordered to wear an ankle monitor, forbidden from traveling outside of a 50-mile radius and barred from possessing weapons of any kind — including firearms — as well as "associating" with anyone who took part in the insurrection attempt and from obtaining a new passport.

There is no evidence to support the "plea deal" claim as mentioned in the tweet above. However, four days prior to the post, a story in the New York Times reported that prosecutors had offered Barnett a plea deal that would result in a sentence of between 70 and 87 months in prison. However, the publication noted that Barnett's lawyer, Steven Metcalf, was "disappointed" with the offer and argued why such a lengthy sentence was being handed to "a man who had not broken anything nor hurt anyone inside the Capitol."

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