Man photographed in Pelosi’s office chair claims he’s retired Memphis firefighter

Updated: Jan. 7, 2021 at 5:02 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - An Arkansas man photographed in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office chair during the siege on the U.S. Capitol Wednesday claims to have a Mid-South connection.

The now-viral photo shows Richard Barnett seated in the Speaker’s chair with his foot propped on her desk.

We’ve uncovered a Facebook video posted in October 2020 in which Barnett said he is a retired firefighter out of Memphis. He said he spends his time doing what he can to “protect our country.”

We checked with the Memphis Fire Union. They confirm the department once had a firefighter by the same name but could not confirm if it was the same man.

Barnett currently has an address in Gravette, Arkansas.

Late Wednesday night, the City of Gravette released a statement saying citizens were receiving threats and the City was receiving emails asking what they plan to do about him.

UPDATE 1/8/21 12:49pm: Richard Barnett is now in custody of the Federal Bureau of Investigation for a list of pending...

Posted by City Of Gravette - Government on Wednesday, January 6, 2021

The statement read, in part, “The City believes in the right of every citizen to safely express their rights given to them by the Constitution. However, we do not in any way condone violence, rioting, or breaking the law.”

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