Lawyer says Capitol riot suspect is being 'shunned' in home town

An attorney for an Indiana woman alleged to have taken part in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol says his client is being “shunned” in her hometown.

A.J. Kramer, a federal public defender, made the comment in a sentencing memorandum on Tuesday asking the judge to sentence 53-year-old Donna Sue Bissey to no more than 18 months of probation.

Kramer says that the probation period is “just and fair considering the collateral consequences Ms. Bissey has faced because of her participation in January 6.”


“Since her arrest in February, Ms. Bissey has been chastised on the street and her business shunned,” Kramer said.

The memorandum was first reported by Business Insider.

Bissey was arrested in February and in July pleaded guilty to a single charge of parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. She is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 12, according to the Justice Department. 

Three other charges against her were dropped as part of the plea agreement.

Bissey and her friend, Anna Morgan-Lloyd, went to the “Stop the Steal” rally that preceded the riot. The pair entered the Capitol where they stayed for no more than 10 minutes and did no damage while inside.

Prosecutors have filed a separate sentencing memorandum asking the court to sentence Bissey to three years of probation, $500 in restitution and 40 hours of community service. This is the same sentence that Morgan-Lloyd received in June after pleading guilty to the same charge. 

In Tuesday’s memorandum, Kramer said that Bissey has “sunk into a state of despair inside her home.” Kramer says that his client fears that every trip to the grocery store would result in someone harassing her, and that hate mail is regularly sent to her home.

“To assist with her heightened anxiety, Ms. Bissey began taking an antidepressant; despite the medication, she is often tearful during the day and has difficulty sleeping at night,” Kramer wrote.