A federal judge ruled Monday that the Capitol rioter known as the “QAnon shaman” must remain jailed until his trial because his behavior – and lack of remorse for those actions – make him too dangerous to release.
In his 32-page opinion, Judge Royce Lamberth stated that Jacob Chansley not only showed a blatant disregard for authority while participating in the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection but also that his actions since, including a jailhouse interview with “60 Minutes+,” have demonstrated zero remorse for those actions.
“Defendant characterizes himself as a peaceful person who was welcomed into the Capitol building on January 6th by police officers. The Court finds none of his many attempts to manipulate the evidence and minimize the seriousness of his actions persuasive,” Lamberth wrote.
Chansley, also known as Jake Angeli, drew widespread attention for donning a fur hat, horns and war paint while carrying a makeshift spear during the Jan. 6 riot and, later, for lamenting the lack of an organic diet during his pretrial incarceration. He has pleaded not guilty to the six-count indictment, CNN reported.
In his ruling, Lamberth pointed to a Twitter post Chansley wrote in November in which he suggested hanging government leaders he deemed traitors as well as incendiary comments he made during the Jan. 6 riot about looking to “get Congressional leaders” as threatening.
“(The words) show that defendant entered the Capitol building on January 6th not to ponder Statuary Hall, but with an intent to disrupt the functions of our government by means of force,” Lamberth wrote.
According to The Arizona Republic, the question before Lamberth was whether Chansley represented an ongoing threat or was simply caught up in a “singular circumstance” but has shown remorse for his self-proclaimed ignorance of the law.
“I didn’t break any windows. I didn’t break any doors. I didn’t cross any police barricades. I was peaceful. I was civil. I was calm,” Chansley, who has no criminal record, told “60 Minutes+” during last week’s interview.
Lamberth stated in his ruling, however, that the 33-year-old Phoenix, Arizona, man’s comments simply proved he does not comprehend the severity of the crimes levied against him, the Republic reported.
“Defendant’s perception of his actions on January 6 as peaceful, benign, and well-intentioned shows a detachment from reality,” Lamberth wrote.
“The statements defendant has made to the public from jail show that defendant does not fully appreciate the severity of the allegations against him. To the contrary, he believes that he – not the American people or members of Congress – was the victim on January 6th,” the judge continued.
Meanwhile, Lamberth also stated that Chansley’s insistence that he acted at former President Donald Trump’s behest illustrated his “inability (or refusal) to exercise his independent judgment and conform his behavior to the law,” the Republic reported.
According to CNN, the judge also found Chansley’s attempts to argue that the spear he carried into the Capitol was not a weapon unpersuasive.
“A six-foot pole with a metal spearhead fixed to the top is, undoubtably, a dangerous weapon,” Lamberth wrote, agreeing with the Justice Department’s perspective in their indictments.