WASHINGTON (KNWA/KFTA) — Both sides filed motions with the court before Richard Barnett’s federal trial on January 6, 2021 insurrection charges resumed in Washington on January 19.
Barnett, 62, of Gravette, is facing eight charges in federal court and the defense made their opening statement and began calling witnesses on January 18. In its most recent filing, the defense once again asked for a civil disorder charge against the defendant to be dismissed.
This is the defense’s second motion to dismiss this specific charge. The filing said that this time it arose after the court issued a draft of final jury instructions before the close of the trial.
The government submitted a motion asking the court to preclude certain defense witnesses from introducing improper character evidence.
“During his deferred opening statement, the defendant repeatedly told the jury about expected character testimony and evidence, including extraneous historical acts and behaviors related to the defendant’s character,” the motion stated. “The Court should preclude such material because it improperly goes to the defendant’s general ‘good’ character and specific instances of that purported character, in violation of Federal Rule of Evidence 404.”
Before the jury arrived for Thursday’s testimony, the defense asked the judge for a mistrial based on the government’s prior demonstration of a stun gun that Barnett purchased and brought with him on January 6. Barnett’s attorney said that the jury was “terrified” by the display, but the motion for a mistrial was denied.
The defense is set to call two character witnesses to testify before Barnett himself takes the stand.