WASHINGTON (KNWA/KFTA) — A Gravette man’s legal defense has countered a request from prosecutors for an 87-month sentence, calling it a “life sentence.”
Richard “BigO” Barnett, 63, was convicted by a federal jury on January 23 for his role in the insurrection, which included a now-famous incident where he propped up his feet on a desk in former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office.
In a document filed yesterday in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., prosecutors said the suggested prison term was at the top of the 70- to 87-month federal guidelines.
The legal defense countered in a memorandum filed shortly after that said 87 months would be a life sentence.
“The Government’s relentless pursuit to punish Mr. Barnett left him no choice but to go to
trial because the Government’s plea offer was 70 months to 87 months, potentially 7 years in
prison, which at Mr. Barnett’s age would be a life sentence. The Government now ruthlessly
asks the Court to impose the maximum sentence of 87 months, a longer sentence than other
January 6 defendants who committed actual violence, assault, and destruction,” the document said.
The defense argues that Barnett was not violent during his 20 minutes in the U.S. Capitol, and that the prosecution’s suggested sentence is unnecessary.
“Even though the Government admits that he committed no violence, the Government is seeking to disproportionately punish him by seeking a sentence of years of incarceration, as if he were part of an insurrection or committed violence, simply because his case is famous,” the defense said.
The defense is requesting no jail time at all, with a maximum of six months.
Barnett’s sentencing is May 24.