Justice Department via AP
- Logan Barnhart, a Michigan pipelayer and bodybuilder, was sentenced to 3 years in prison on Friday.
- Internet sleuths used facial recognition to uncover his modeling work on romance novel covers.
- A reader review of one of the novels said the book got her “hot and bothered.”
A Michigan pipelayer who modeled shirtless for the cover of several romance novels, including one in which a woman lusts after her Navy SEAL stepbrother, was sentenced to three years in prison on Thursday for assaulting law enforcement officers during the January 6 riot.
Logan James Barnhart, 41, became a man of interest to federal authorities after he was photographed dragging a police officer down a set of stairs at the Capitol building.
In a news release announcing his sentence, the Justice Department wrote that Barnhart “grabbed the neck of the officer’s ballistic vest” and proceeded to drag the officer “down the steps in a prone position and into the crowd, where other rioters beat the officer with weapons, including a flagpole and a baton.” The officer sustained bruising and abrasion, the DOJ said.
A few minutes later, Barnhart then assaulted a line of officers with the base of a flagpole.
Internet sleuths helped identify Barnhart months before his arrest in August 2021, HuffPost first reported.
An online community called Sedition Hunters used facial recognition technology to find images of Barnhart. In its search, the group discovered photos of him on bodybuilding websites and of his stint modeling for the cover of several adult romance novels.
—capitolhunters (@capitolhunters) August 17, 2021
One of the books is titled “Stepbrother UnSEALed: A Bad Boy Military Romance,” which is written by Nicole Snow.
According to Amazon’s summary, the book centers on a woman, Delia, who develops a “reckless temptation” for her stepbrother, Chris Cleveland.
“I almost landed in my stepbrother’s bed, and I want it to happen again,” the description said. “Chris Cleveland tempts me because he’s wrong. Swoon-worthy, all-American Navy SEAL. Bad boy. Manwhore.”
Snow did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The book has four stars on Amazon. One top review from a verified purchaser of the book wrote that the novel had her “hot and bothered.” Another praised Snow for turning the “taboo subject of step siblings” into a “hot story.”
Barnhart pled guilty to assaulting officers with a weapon in September. He was sentenced to 3 years in prison and 3 years of supervised release. Barnhart will also have to pay a fine of $3,688 and restitution of $2,000.
During a court appearance, Barnhart told US District Judge Rudolph Contreras that he did not recognize himself in the footage that shows him assaulting an officer, the Associated Press reported.
“The way I was acting seems so foreign to me,” Barnhart said.