A federal judge on Tuesday sentenced a Pennsylvania restaurant owner for the storming of the US Capitol, where she screamed at police officers to bring out then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi so that the pro-Trump mob could hang her.
U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden decided the case against Pauline Bauer after hearing testimony without a jury. The judge convicted her on all five counts of the indictment, including a felony charge of obstructing a joint session of Congress on January 6, 2021. to certify President Joe Biden’s election victory, court records show.
Bauer’s trial began last Thursday. McFadden announced the verdict from the bench. A judge is scheduled to sentence her on May 1. McFadden agreed to release Bauer on conditions pending sentencing.
In September 2021, McFadden ordered Bauer’s arrest for violating her parole. Bauer remained in custody for several months while awaiting trial. The judge can give her credit for the jail time she has already served.
During his first court appearances, Bauer expressed an ideology that appeared to align with the extremist “sovereign citizens” movement’s belief that the US government is illegitimate.
Bauer, 55, traveled from her home in Kane, Pennsylvania, to hear then-President Donald Trump speak to a crowd of his supporters at the Jan. 6 Stop Theft rally. Bauer was part of a crowd that forced Capitol Police officers to retreat up the stairs outside the East Rotunda doors, prosecutors said.
Bauer entered the Capitol with a friend, William Blauser, and confronted police officers guarding the entrance to the Rotunda. She yelled at the officers to “get them out or we’re in,” according to prosecutors.
“They are criminals. “They should be hanged,” Bauer shouted.
A police officer’s body camera video captured her rudely yelling at the officers to “get Nancy Pelosi in here right away. We want to hang (her).”
She and Blauser left the Capitol about 38 minutes after entering.
Bauer’s indictment charged her with felony obstruction of justice. She was also charged with four felonies, including entering or remaining in a restricted building or grounds and disorderly conduct or disruptive behavior in a Capitol building or grounds.
Approximately 950 people have been charged with federal crimes related to the Capitol riots. Nearly 500 of them pleaded guilty. Dozens of others were convicted after trials decided by juries or judges.
The only Capitol riot defendant to be acquitted of all charges after a trial was a New Mexico man whose case was also decided by McFadden, a Trump nominee.
Bauer was arrested in May 2021 along with Blauser, who pleaded guilty to parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. In February 2022, McFadden ordered Blauser to pay a $500 fine but did not sentence him to prison or probation.
During an interview after her arrest, Bauer acknowledged that her actions angered some of her neighbors in Kane, a small town on the edge of the 517,000-acre Allegheny National Forest. But she insisted her involvement in the January 6 events had not cost her friendships or hurt her business.
“A lot of people say they’re proud of me for standing up for my rights,” she told an Associated Press reporter during a dinner break at her restaurant, Bob’s Trading Post.
Bauer was hostile to McFadden at preliminary hearings and claimed the court had no jurisdiction over her. Bauer said he was a “sovereign people” rather than a sovereign citizen, and called himself “Pauline of the House of Bauer.” She told the judge she did not want a lawyer to represent her “or any bench lawyer.”
“I don’t recognize your attorney card, sir,” she told McFadden, who appointed an attorney to act as her backup counsel.
Bauer became a staple on Stephen Colbert’s late-night talk show on CBS. The host mocks Bauer for claiming to be a “divinely empowered being who is immune to laws.”
“Divinely Empowered? So she’ll get away unscathed, just like Jesus,” Colbert joked. “But it begs the question: If you’re chosen by God to be above the laws of government, why do you care who’s in charge?”