The accused US Capitol rioter dubbed the “QAnon Shaman” insists he was merely trying to inject some “positive vibrations” in the Senate during the January insurrection.
Jacob Chansley — the bare-chested Arizona man who wore a furry headdress, horns, and elaborate face paint during the Jan. 6 riot — told “60 Minutes” in his first comments from jail that his actions weren’t an attack against the United States.
“No, they were not, ma’am,” Chansley told correspondent Laurie Segall. “My actions were not an attack on this country. That is incorrect. That is inaccurate entirely.”
Chansley, who has pleaded not guilty to two felony and four misdemeanor charges, admitted breaking out in song while inside the Capitol, but claimed to have stopped others from wreaking havoc.
“Well, I sang a song,” Chansley continued. “And that’s part of shamanism. It’s about – creating positive vibrations in a sacred chamber. I also stopped people from stealing and vandalizing that sacred space, the Senate. OK?”
Chansley, who has apologized for storming the Capitol, insisted he also prevented rioters from “stealing muffins” from a break room inside the building.
“And I also said a prayer in that sacred chamber,” Chansley said. “Because it was intention to bring divinity, and to bring God back into the Senate.”
The lone regret Chansley has, he said, was believing that he was allowed into the Captiol after being “waved in” by police officers, giving him the impression that his actions were permitted, according to the report.
Chansley had unsuccessfully lobbied for a pardon from then-President Donald Trump. Federal prosecutors want him jailed until trial because they say he’s a danger to the community and held a spear attached to a flagpole as he confronted officers inside the Captiol.
Chansley also allegedly wrote a threatening note to then-President Mike Pence, vowing that “it’s only a matter of time, justice is coming.”
A judge in Washington is set to hear arguments Friday on whether Chansley should be released ahead of trial. He faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted.
More than 300 people have reportedly been charged in connection to the Jan. 6 uprising, which left people dead, including Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick.
Chansley, meanwhile, said he thinks of himself as a patriot despite the charges he faces.
“I consider myself a lover of my country,” he said. “I consider myself a believer in the Constitution. I consider myself a believer in truth and our founding principles. I consider myself a believer in God.”
Chansley also said he had no second thoughts supporting Trump, whom he believed “had our back” prior to the siege, but said he regretted entering the Capitol with “every fiber of my being.”
With Post wires