An attorney for a capitol rioter who allegedly stole an officers gas mask and stormed the Capitol building through a broken window says that his client participation in the deadly January 6 riots was a result of watching too much Fox News, a condition he dubbed ‘Foxitis.’
Anthony Antonio’s attorney, Joseph Hurley, says that the 27-year-old spent all his free time watching the Conservative news network after the was laid off due to COVID.
‘He became hooked with what I call ‘Foxitus’ or ‘Foxmania’ and became interested in the political aspect and started believing what was being fed to him,’ Hurley told U.S. Magistrate Judge Robin M. Meriweather on Thursday.
Hurley argued at a hearing that Antonio believed he was following Trump’s orders to march on Washington and was participating in a patriotic movement to serve the United States, the Huffington Post reported.
Antonio moved in with roommates in Chicago who were fans of Fox News and ‘for the next approximate six months, Fox television played constantly,’ Hurley said
Antonio turned himself in on April 20 in Delaware and was charged with five federal crimes in connection to the January 6 Capitol riots.
The ‘Foxitus’ defense was laid out during a Zoom hearing on Thursday where Landon Copeland, 33, another alleged rioter who was waiting for his own hearing, interrupted Hurley multiple times, The Washington Post reported.
When Hurley mentioned ‘Foxitis,’ Copeland yelled, ‘I object,’ and other obscenities’ that led to judge Meriweather to have him evaluated for mental competency.
Antonio attended the riots in a tactical bullet proof vest with a far-right ‘Three Percenter’ patch, a camouflage shirt and and had a tattoo of the words ‘Carpe Diem’ on his right wrist, according to an FBI affidavit.