In a stunning legal blunder, the far-right personality known as “Baked Alaska” (real name: Anthime Joseph Gionet) may have completely blown up a plea deal during a hearing for his involvement in the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol building. Gionet, who literally filmed himself inside the Capitol during the MAGA insurrection, was set to plead guilty to one misdemeanor count by admitting he “willfully and knowingly paraded, demonstrated, and picketed.” However, the situation quickly went south when Gionet, instead, declared that he’s innocent.
Via NBC News:
But the deal went out the window at a hearing on Wednesday after Judge Emmet G. Sullivan asked Gionet whether he was pleading guilty because he was, in fact, guilty.
“I wanted to go to trial, but the prosecutors if I [went] to trial they would put a felony on me, so I think this is probably the better route,” Gionet said. “I believe I’m innocent… but they’re saying if I go to trial they’re going to hit me with a felony.”
After hearing Gionet declare himself innocent, Sullivan set a trial date for March 2023. “If Mr. Gionet wants to go to trial, he’ll get a fair trial, like anyone and everyone else who has appeared before me, regardless of the charges,” Sullivan said. “I’m not trying to trick you… Don’t plead guilty to please me.”
Despite Gionet seemingly shooting himself in the foot and locking himself in for a trial where he’s on video saying, “Occupy the Capitol, let’s go. We ain’t leaving this bitch,” federal prosecutors said they would leave the plea deal open for 60 days should Mr. Alaska change his mind.
(Via NBC News)