Politics - News Analysis

Capitol Rioter Compares Himself to Jesus and Tells Judge He Wraps His Phone in Tinfoil Because of Course

We continue to monitor the saga of Brandon Fellows, an accused D.C. rioter to be fair – and we’re not making light of this – may well have mental health issues. Brandon’s difficulty is that whatever mental health issues he may or may not have, they are not severe enough that Judge McFadden can override Brandon’s Sixth Amendment right to defend himself.

Therefore, it is with some sensitivity and trepidation that we continue to mock Brandon’s efforts to defend himself because, not only is he not doing it “right,” Brandon is now writing the book on how to do it as wrong as anyone in history.

We pick up the story from Scott McFarlane, Washington TV station WUSA9, who has been indefatigable in his effort to monitor the court cases of alleged rioters.

“Most people do not do this,” U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden told Fellows. “Obviously your attorney has discouraged this. I do not think this is a good idea… but I’m going to allow you to take the stand, if you wish.”

This is just one of a myriad of problems that exist when you represent yourself (a minor one). There is no one around to ask you questions, never mind an attorney. So, one takes the stand and rambles on until perhaps the judge saves you from yourself and starts asking questions herself (or himself).

“Fellows is an Albany, New York, resident under indictment on a felony charge of obstruction of an official proceeding in connection with the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. In charging documents, prosecutors say Fellows entered the Capitol through a broken window and wound up smoking mariju*na in Sen. Jeff Merkley’s (D-OR) office.

“Fellows was initially granted pretrial release, but was ordered back into custody in June after repeated violations, including missing a court-ordered mental health evaluation and allegedly calling a probation officer’s mother. The Justice Department also said when a clerk of the court attempted to contact Fellows about another violation – allegations that he was bothering a former girlfriend – it was discovered he had apparently put the number for the judge’s wife’s office instead of his own.

To be fair to Fellows, he demonstrated that he didn’t particularly need the mental evaluation when he called the probation officer’s mother and put the judge’s wife’s office number down. Fellows demonstrated sufficient cunning to be particularly troubling to his own legal standing, but no so insane as to not know exactly what not to do.

Although Fellows did compare himself to Jesus so maybe that mental evaluation could be helpful?

Fellows also wrapped him phone in tin foil which again, NOT NORMAL:

“Last month, Fellows asked McFadden to allow him to represent himself pro se in his case – saying he had spent the previous two weeks in the D.C. Jail’s law library and determined that was what he wanted. Despite warning him, repeatedly, of the possible consequences of going it alone with no formal law training, McFadden ultimately granted Fellows’ request.”

He could have spent the last two decades in the law library and without someone to teach him what he was reading it would be pointless. I believe we can agree with former President Abe Lincoln who famously said, “A man who represents himself, has a fool for a client.”

meet the author

Jason Miciak is a political writer, features writer, author, and attorney. He is originally from Canada but grew up in the Pacific Northwest. He now enjoys life as a single dad raising a ridiculously-loved young girl on the beaches of the Gulf Coast. He is very much the dreamy mystic, a day without learning is a day not lived. He is passionate about his flower pots and studies philosophical science, religion, and non-mathematical principles of theoretical physics. Dogs, pizza, and love are proof that God exists. "Above all else, love one another."


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