Don’t Punish the QAnon Shaman — or Anyone — for Demanding a Jury Trial

Source: Reason
by Billy Binion

“Jacob Chansley, the ‘QAnon Shaman’ whose face became fodder for front-page news spreads when he broke into the U.S. Capitol on January 6 while wearing patriotic face-paint and a horned headdress, was sentenced to 41 months in prison yesterday. … ‘You were facing 20 years, Mr. Chansley,’ said the judge, telling him he was ‘smart’ for not going to trial. ‘You did the right thing.’ … Had Chansley insisted on his constitutional right to a trial by jury, he would have been staring down more than 16 additional years in prison. That’s not because the government believes such a stratospheric sentence would serve public safety. It’s because prosecutors routinely inflate hypothetical prison sentences and dangle them over defendants in order to bully them out of going to trial, where outcomes are both costly and uncertain.” (11/18/21)