WASHINGTON — A federal jury on Friday convicted a QAnon believer who prosecuted U.S. Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman on Jan. 6, 2021, finding the defendant guilty of all charges against him.
Doug Jensen, an Iowa man who was one of the first 10 rioters to enter the Capitol during the insurrection, stood trial this week and was found guilty of seven counts, including charges of crime of civil disorder and assault, resisting or obstructing officers.
Sentencing is scheduled for December 16. Jensen’s wife, April, wept as the verdicts were read.
Jensen has been in pretrial detention since last year. He had been released under a high-intensity pre-trial program, but a judge ordered him to be detained again after he violated the conditions of his release by live-streaming an event hosted by the CEO of MyPillow , Mike Lindell, who promoted conspiracy theories about the 2020 election.
On Jan. 6, Jensen filmed videos from the base of the Capitol building, where he proclaimed — inaccurately, but with enormous confidence — that he was in the White House. “Storm the White House!” That’s what we do!” he said in one video.
The government and Jensen’s defense team presented their closing arguments on Friday, before the jury of 10 men and two women began deliberating in the afternoon.
Prosecutors argued that Jensen “was the rioter who would not back down” in his determination to prevent the peaceful transfer of power.
“Every barrier he encountered that day, he was ready to fall,” Assistant US Attorney Hava Arin Levenson Mirell said. He scaled a 20-foot wall to reach the Capitol, inhaled clouds of pepper spray “like it was oxygen” and walked through police lines.
Goodman, the USCP officer who testified at Jensen’s trial, had “no backup” when he confronted rioters, Mirell said. And the crowd, “led by the accused”, did not withdraw despite the request of the authorities.
“It wasn’t a game to follow the leader,” Mirell said. Jensen was “arming that crowd”.
In his closing statement, Jensen’s attorney, Christopher Davis, portrayed his client as a “confused man” and a “lone wolf” who fell in love with QAnon conspiracy theories. The pandemic “has done very strange things to people” and “apparently Mr. Jensen was one of them,” he said.
Davis said it took his client about 24 hours to figure out he was in the Capitol, not the White House, adding that “shows you how confused and confused his head is.”
He argued that his client didn’t raise a hand on anyone and denied that Jensen participated in some of the chaotic scenes on the scaffolding as alleged by prosecutors.
The government sought to dismiss these defenses in its rebuttal. The law does not require physical contact for the assault of an accused officer and if Jensen was really confused, he could not have gotten so close to Vice President Mike Pence during the riot, argued the prosecutors. “It doesn’t happen out of confusion,” Assistant US Attorney Emily Allen said.
More than 850 people have been arrested and more than 350 convicted in connection with the attack on the Capitol.
This week, the FBI arrested five people associated with the far-right America First movement, and a judge also sentenced a former Army reservist and Adolf Hitler enthusiast who stormed the Capitol to four years in prison. jail.
Zoe Richards contributed.