Calhoun, 60, was among the first wave of rioters to enter the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 and was part of the crowd that pushed past Capitol Police. Video footage, some of it shot by Calhoun himself, shows the crowd shouting and calling out for then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as they moved through the Capitol and up to Pelosi’s office door.
For months prior to the riot, Calhoun had posted violent messages on social media threatening Joe Biden and Democratic Party officials and voters over the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.
“We have a communist revolution happening before our very eyes to steal this election,” he wrote in a social media post a day after the presidential election. “Americans get ready to rise up and kill the Democratic communists before they do it to us.”
A U.S. District Court judge found Calhoun guilty of felony obstruction an official proceeding of Congress and four misdemeanors in a one-day bench trial in March. He was sentenced in August to 18 months in federal prison to be followed by two years of supervised probation. According to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons, Calhoun is currently serving his sentence at a medium-security facility in Jesup and is scheduled to be released next November.
State Bar of Georgia rules call for attorneys to lose their license if they are convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor involving “moral turpitude.”
In his defense, Calhoun argued that he should keep his license based on a number of legal technicalities, including his claim that there was no “verdict” against him because he had opted for a bench trial before a judge instead of a jury. The court found that and Calhoun’s other arguments “without merit.”
Calhoun has appealed his criminal conviction to the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeal. The state supreme court ruling suspends Calhoun’s license pending the outcome of that appeal.
So far, 29 people with Georgia ties have been charged with crimes related to the Capitol riot. Twenty-one of those have either pleaded or been found guilty of felony or misdemeanor charges.