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Capitol Rioter Who Posed In Pelosi’s Office Is Selling Signed Photos To Help Pay Legal Bills

Capitol Rioter Who Posed In Pelosi’s Office Is Selling Signed Photos To Help Pay Legal Bills

It doesn’t exactly have the same tug-of-the-heartstrings feel as a two-minute PETA late night commercial begging for you to help save abused puppies. Nonetheless, Richard “Bigo” Barnett, the Arkansas man who was captured on Jan. 6 with his feet on a desk in the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), is asking for your help to cover his legal fees.

A fundraising website set up for Barnett is offering a personally inscribed, autographed photo of him inside Pelosi’s office, booted feet up on her desk, during the deadly insurrection in exchange for a contribution of $100 or more as “a token of his appreciation.”

(Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

Barnett, who claims in his defense that he was pushed into the Capitol by the riotous crowd and then simply was “trying to find a bathroom,” brags on the beg-a-thon website that “Richard Barnett’s picture at Speaker Pelosi’s desk has become the face of the new anti-federalist movement. We will not go gently into that good night.”

His defense attorney, Joseph McBride of New York, has an equally well-developed sense of hyperbole. “We are raising money to ensure a robust defense against the biggest prosecution in the Department of Justice’s storied history because the poor and middle class should not lose on the legal battlefield for lack of money,” McBride said. “We will not allow the federal government to bully Richard simply [because] it has an unlimited budget. This is the story of David v. Goliath, and we intend on defeating the giant.”

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Here’s one potential – very big – catch in Barnett’s scheme. He doesn’t own the rights to the photos he’s hawking. They were taken by Agence France-Presse photographer Saul Loeb. News photographers and the companies they work for control the copyright to their work. Eric Baradat, AFP’s North America photo editor, told The Washington Post that “our legal team has started to look into the issue.”

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