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‘QAnon Shaman’ wants to swap his attorney for the one who represented Rittenhouse

Gearing up to appeal his 41-month sentence, the poster boy for the Capitol riot asked a federal judge if he could have a new defense attorney — the same attorney who represented Kyle Rittenhouse.

WASHINGTON (CN) — Jacob Chansley, the Arizona man who wore face paint and a horned, furry hat during the Capitol riot, asked a federal judge to swap out his attorney on Monday.

The man, who is also known as the 'QAnon Shaman', is likely preparing to appeal his 41-month sentence

Chansley asked U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth if he could replace his lawyer with John Pierce, an attorney who has represented more Capitol riot defendants than any other defense attorney. 

Pierce has also represented now-acquitted Kyle Rittenhouse, who was charged with fatally shooting two men and wounding a third during a chaotic protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Chansley has become the poster boy for the Capitol riot after sporting face paint, a horned headdress and a spear and used a bullhorn to rile up the crowd on Jan. 6. Chansley also left a note for former Vice President Mike Pence that warned: “It’s only a matter of time. Justice is coming!” 

Since February, Chansley has been represented by Albert Watkins, who asked the Reagan appointee to go significantly below the 41-51 month sentencing guidelines, citing Chansley’s severe mental illness that has been left untreated for over 15 years. Though a Navy doctor diagnosed his client in 2006 with schizotypal personality disorder, Watkins told Lamberth that Chansley was never given the diagnosis or a treatment plan. 

Instead, Lamberth sentenced Chansley to the low end of the sentencing guidelines — one of the longest sentences handed down in Capitol riot cases so far — after he appeared moved by Chansley’s introspective and remorseful remarks during his sentencing hearing.

Chansley had spent 317 days in solitary confinement when he told Lamberth that he spent the time thinking about what Jesus or Gandhi would do in his situation. 

“Jesus would love, respect and understand everyone involved in the court proceeding,” Chansley said. “Jesus would accept responsibility for his actions.”

Now, Chansley appears poised to appeal the sentence. Pierce is expected to argue that Watkins provided ineffective assistance of counsel. 

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