The Horned Trump Supporter Who Stormed the Capitol Vows to Attend Biden’s Inauguration
Jacob Chansley, the so-called QAnon Shaman who wore his best buffalo horns and coyote fur getup to storm the Capitol building last week and wound up sitting in Vice President Mike Pence’s chair on the Senate dais has told federal agents he’s planning to make a return visit so he can protest President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, The Daily Beast reports.
“I’ll still go, you better believe it,” Chansley told FBI agents in an interview a day after the insurrection. “For sure I’d want to be there, as a protester, as a protester, f*ckin’ a.”
Chansley’s admission is just one of several detailed by prosecutors in an 18-page detention memo that contends the 33-year-old Arizona resident should be held before trial.
And it appears this is what’s going to happen. On Friday evening U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah Fine ordered him to be detained.
“I have no confidence that he will follow my court orders,” the judge observed, noting he was an “active” participant in “an insurrection.”
Prosecutors said in the memo there was plenty of evidence that Chansley, who also goes by the name Jacob Angeli, and his fellow rioters intended to do real harm, and their intent “was to capture elected officials in the United States government.” Later, however, they reversed their allegations during Chansley’s hearing, instead saying they might be able to prove this during the trial.
Chansley was arrested Saturday in Arizona and has since been charged with civil disorder, obstruction of an official proceeding, disorderly conduct in a restricted building, and demonstrating in a Capitol building. In a phone call to the FBI on Jan. 7, he admitted he attended the riot and that “he came … with other ‘patriots’ from Arizona, at the request of the president that all ‘patriots’ come to D.C.'” according to a criminal complaint.
Chansley was part of a small group that attacked the Senate chamber. An Air Force vet carrying zip-ties and an Alabama man carrying a knife who claimed God told him to enter the building were also part of that group. Apparently for Chansley, sitting in Pence’s chair was exhilarating because Pence, he claims, “is a traitor,” according to the memo.
And he admits he left a frightening note on the Vice President’s desk that stated “It’s only a matter of time, justice is coming,” but now he’s trying to walk that back and has told the FBI he “did not mean his note to Vice President Pence … as a threat.”
“His status as a symbol of the insurrection, his actions inside the Capitol building, and his demonstrated disregard of orders while inside with the goal of disrupting official Congressional proceedings, demonstrate the danger his release would pose,” prosecutors alleged in the memo.
“At this juncture in our Nation’s history, it is hard to imagine a greater risk to our democracy and community than the armed revolution of which Chansley has made himself the symbol.”
But prosecutors also want Chansley to be detained because the “self-proclaimed” leader of QAnon has a string of felonies and doesn’t have a permanent job. They say he’s also lied to authorities about his drug use, having told them he only smoked weed “three times weekly in the past,” then turning around and bragging on a podcast that he regularly uses mushrooms and peyote.
That’s not all, however.
“Additionally, a full portrait of Chansley’s apparent mental health issues — which he has publicly disseminated, and which include strongly-held false mystical beliefs and leadership in a dangerous extremist group, QAnon founded on an imaginary conspiracy theory — were not [disclosed by him],” the memo also reports and also references Chansley’s previously saying he thinks he’s an “alien.”
So perhaps holding this dude is a good idea then. His attorney, however, is arguing his client isn’t dangerous and was simply accepting “President Trump’s invitation to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Capitol.”
I’m not particularly convinced by that. Are you?