Jacob Chansley’s lawyer, Albert Watkins, said in a statement Monday evening that he always “has been and remains” his client’s sole counsel. Watkins spoke out after John Pierce, the MAGA-sympathizing anti-vaxxer attorney, claimed earlier in the day that he would be representing Chansley, the infamous QAnon Shaman, from this point forward. “Mr. Chansley is no longer represented, for any purpose, by attorney Albert Watkins,” Pierce wrote, adding he would be filing a motion to appeal his purported new client’s 41-month sentence.
After seeing Pierce’s announcement, “Watkins personally spoke with Mr. Chansley who confirmed he did not personally authorize Mr. Pierce to represent him,” Watkins said. He noted pointedly that Chansley reaffirmed him as his lawyer. Watkins said he had reached out to Pierce but that “no response... has been forthcoming.”
Though Pierce admitted to NPR in September that he’d lost count of the number of Jan. 6 clients he’d amassed, the Justice Department has put the number at 17 people. Pierce is also known for having been Kyle Rittenhouse’s initial counsel. He was fired and replaced with Mark Richards, who slammed Pierce last week as having been “more interested in promoting himself than representing Kyle.”