The infamous Capitol riot
suspect, who was photographed gleefully sitting with his foot on a desk in House
Speaker Nancy Pelosi
's (D-Calif.) office on the day of the Jan. 6 insurgency, has been hailed as an "American patriot" by Russian state television
The Daily Beast first reported that Richard "Bigo" Barnett, 60, complained about being in jail in an interview
that aired Sunday after his arrest
on charges related to the attempted overthrow of the presidential election
The segment aired just days before President Joe Biden
and Russian President Vladimir Putin
are set to meet in Geneva for the first time on Wednesday.
Valentin Bogdanov, a special correspondent for Russian TV channel Rossiya-1, interviewed Barnett, a self-described white nationalist from Arkansas
, via FaceTime, describing him as “colorful” — a word Putin has used to describe Donald Trump
. Bogdanov also falsely referred to the 2020 U.S. presidential election as “stolen,” a claim that lacks factual support.
Barnett has been charged with obstruction of an official proceeding, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon (a stun gun
), and theft of government property.
He allegedly took a piece of Pelosi's mail and left her a note in which he apparently called her a "bitch," though he misspelled the word.
Hello from Judge
Chris Cooper's virtual courtroom, where arguments on Richard Barnett's motion for release begin soon — he's the one who told reporters he left Pelosi a note that said, "Nancy, Bigo was here, you bitch" (looks like "bitch" was misspelled on the actual note) pic.twitter.com/OlXXdYGSwT
“I exercise my First Amendment
rights every hour, every minute, and every day,” Barnett boasted to Bogdanov.
Barnett was released to home detention in April
after complaining that being detained wasn't "fair" when other Capitol suspects were allowed to return home following their arrests.
“They’re letting everyone else out,” Barnett yelled during his hearing before US District Judge Christopher R. Cooper, according to the Daily Beast. “I’ve been here a long time. It’s not fair. This has been a bunch of crap.”
An earlier request had been denied by a judge, who said Barnett's "entitled behavior... demonstrates a total disregard for the law
... and the Constitution."
On Tuesday, Barnett will appear in federal court for a hearing.