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AP: Capitol Rioter to be Jailed

An Indiana women gets 14 days in jail for her role in the insurrection

Press and Media's picture
Oct 13, 2021

A Bloomfield woman was handed a two-week imprisonment sentence Tuesday after pleading guilty to one of her charges in connection with the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. 

Federal Judge Tanya S. Chutkan sentenced Dona Sue Bissey to 14 days incarceration, 60 hours community service and $500 toward restoration of the Capitol building for the criminal charge of parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building. Bissey originally pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor in July.

At the recommendation of the federal probation office, Judge Chutkan said Bissey doesn't have to turn herself in until after Jan. 1, 2022 because she's dealing with family emergencies. On Tuesday morning before the sentencing Bissey's husband was admitted to an emergency room for a possible stroke, and Bissey's daughter recently gave birth to a child with a tear in its heart. 

During Tuesday's hearing assistant U.S. attorney Joshua Rothstein said Bissey is a follower of QAnon, an anonymous individual who claimed to have worked in the U.S. government and promoted conspiracies on the internet. She also believes the COVID-19 vaccine is part of the Jewish illuminati's plot to murder people and that the pandemic was foreshadowed during the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics, Rothstein said.

Bissey's attorney Cara Halverson said this criminal case was not about her beliefs, "as strange or as weird as they are." She said Bissey regrets entering the federal building.

"She did not break anything, assault anyone or steal any property," Halverson said. "I cannot tell you the amount of times she told me, crying, about being genuinely remorseful about her actions."

Bissey wasn't so remorseful after the riot, Judge Chutkan said. The Bloomfield woman published online several times expressing her pride in having participated in the event. She called it the "best day ever" in one Facebook post. 

"Several points along the way Mrs. Bissey could have chosen to disassociate herself with the mob," Judge Chutkan said. "At every point, she chose not to."

List: Capitol Insurgents Who Lost Their Job

Law enforcement zeroed in on Bissey after she attempted to apply for a firearm permit on Jan. 22 and someone recognized her from Capitol riot suspect photos. 

Chutkan said Bissey has the right to believe in whatever she wants. But the judge was upset that Bissey's attorney previously argued against prison time because Bissey was unvaccinated and “extremely likely” to suffer severe illness or death if she contracts COVID-19 in prison, her attorney wrote in court records. 

Click here to read more from the Indystar.


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