An Iowa man who was seen in viral footage chasing down a police officer inside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 is seeking to be released from pretrial detention, arguing that he was the “victim” of right-wing conspiracy theories which he no longer believes in, Law&Crime reports.
Doug Jensen‘s attorney argued that he his client traveled to D.C. on Jan. 6, he wasn’t planning on participating in a riot. He only wanted to see the manifestation of QAnon conspiracy theories that he was an adherent of.
“Doug Jensen was not an intended part of any group or mob at any time that day,” his lawyer stated. “He simply went to observe ‘The Storm.’ He was at the front of the crowd, but in no way leading anyone. He was in front of everyone for the now disclosed silly reason to get Q recognized for ‘The Storm’ that was about to take place.”
Here’s the scary moment when protesters initially got into the building from the first floor and made their way outside Senate chamber. pic.twitter.com/CfVIBsgywK
— Igor Bobic (@igorbobic) January 6, 2021
As misguided as he was, he believed he was a patriot waiting to observe the events anticipated by ‘The Storm,’” his lawyer’s motion continued. “To be certain, Jensen refused to obey Officer Goodman’s order to stop and leave. And he did continue to follow him up the steps inside the Capitol. But Jensen neither threatened physical harm to anyone nor did he destroy any property.”
“Doug Jensen became a victim of numerous conspiracy theories that were being fed to him over the internet by a number of very clever people, who were uniquely equipped with slight, if any, moral or social consciousness,” his attorney wrote. “For reasons he does not even understand today, he became a ‘true believer’ and was convinced he doing a noble service by becoming a digital soldier for ‘Q.’ Maybe it was mid-life crisis, the pandemic, or perhaps the message just seemed to elevate him from his ordinary life to an exalted status with an honorable goal. In any event, he fell victim to this barrage of internet sourced info and came to the Capitol, at the direction of the President of the United States, to demonstrate that he was a ‘true patriot.’”
In one video that circulated after the riot, Jensen can be seen leading a mob of Trump supporters who have already breached the building. At one point, a police officer, identified as Eugene Goodman, confronts the group, repeatedly telling them to get back. As Goodman tells them to “back up,” Jensen shakes his head no and continues to push forward with the mob following his lead. Goodman, clearly overwhelmed and outnumbered, retreats up a flight of stairs with Jensen and the mob running after him. He then led the mob into a room where he met with other officers who arrived to back him up.