WASHINGTON (KNWA/KFTA) — A Gravette man’s attorneys filed a response brief in federal court as he continues to seek an acquittal or a new trial following his conviction on January 6, 2021 insurrection charges.
Richard “BigO” Barnett, 62, was convicted by a federal jury on January 23. On February 5, he filed a pair of motions alleging that “justice requires a new trial,” stating that “all the key witnesses presented by the Government in support of the Government’s case-in-chief testified to material facts that are verifiably and objectively false.”
The government filed a 58-page response on March 5, noting and explaining its opposition to those requests, stating that “all of his allegations and arguments are meritless.” It asked the court to deny both motions.
Barnett’s March 27 brief was a response to that government filing, stating that “the Government made several misrepresentations of the trial evidence.”
“The Government’s desperate search for a smoking gun Facebook post to show intent came up empty and left them to scrape the bottom of the barrel,” the filing said. It went on to cite specific case law that it said supports its Rule 29 argument.
The defense also referred to a superseding indictment against Barnett that was filed days before trial, which has been a point of contention since it occurred.
“The Court denied his motion for a continuance which gave Mr. Barnett only a few days to research the new charge before he had to go to trial,” the response noted. The defense also once again took issue with Barnett’s charge for obstructing a civil proceeding, stating that he could not have done so “because he entered the building after the proceeding had been obstructed, he exited the building minutes later, and according to the Government’s own witnesses, it would have been impossible for the proceeding to resume until long after Mr. Barnett had left the building.”
The reply brief concluded by asking the court to grant Barnett’s motions under Rule 29 and Rule 33.
On March 13, Judge Christopher R. Cooper said that Barnett’s May 3 sentencing may be delayed after multiple members of the defense team filed notice with the court to leave the case. There will be a motion hearing on April 3.