'QAnon Shaman,' Who Carried Spear and Howled Amid Capitol Assault, Says He Tried Unsuccessfully to Calm Crowd
Jacob Chansley, the self-described "QAnon Shaman" is serving a 41-month sentence in federal prison after pleading guilty for his role in the riot. He spoke exclusively to Inside Edition from behind bars via phone call with his mother.
This week marks exactly one year since the nation watched in horror as insurrectionists raided the U.S. Capitol.
And perhaps the most recognizable of the rioters is so-called “QAnon Shaman” Jacob Chansely, who is serving a 41-month sentence in federal prison after pleading guilty for his role in the riot.
Chansley spoke exclusively with Inside Edition chief investigative correspondent Lisa Guerrero from behind bars in Oklahoma while on speakerphone with his mother, Martha Chansley.
“Considering the fact that I'm not in solitary confinement anymore, I'm better than I was when I was in solitary,” Jacob Chansley said.
The bare-chested rioter became a symbol of the Jan. 6 Capitol assault when he led the insurrectionists through the halls of Congress while wearing a fur headdress with horns and carrying a bullhorn and spear adorned with the American Flag.
Chansley then made his way to the Senate dais and left a threatening note for Vice President Mike Pence.
When asked if he had any regret for participating, Chansley said, “In retrospect, one thing I can say that I regret is not working to ensure that there was far more peace on that day. Had I known what was going to happen, I would have stepped in before any barricades were breached. I actually tried to, on more than one occasion, calm the crowd. But it just didn't work.”
Chansley, who was captured on camera howling and yelling in the halls of the Capitol, blames the media for portraying him as eccentric and even unhinged.
“You're a grown man. You chose to go to the Capitol that day. Many people look at you as the face of Jan. 6 and are appalled. What is your response to those people?” Guerrero asked.
“As far as being ‘the face,’ that's something that the media made me. I didn't make myself anything,” Chansley said.
Inside Edition also spoke to his mother Martha Chansley, who is standing by her son. She said that then-President Donald Trump had invited everyone to go to the Capitol.
“I feel really passionate about how wrong I think it is that he is even doing any time at all,” Martha Chansley said.
The FBI is still hunting for 350 suspects involved in assaults on Capitol police and they're appealing for help.
Three of the most wanted suspects include a man seen brutally beating cops with a 6-foot long pole, another seen firing bear spray on officers fighting with rioters in the doorway and a third who used an electric cattle prod on police.
According to the attorney general, there are 725 people who have been arrested and charged in connection with the invasion of the Capitol.
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