Roger Stone has been ordered to shut up.
A federal judge on Thursday gagged him entirely, several days after he posted a threatening photo of the judge on Instagram. Stone had been under a partial gag order.
The longtime GOP operative and Donald Trump pal had taken the stand to behave contritely. “I recognize that I let the court down,” Stone said. “I let you down. I let myself down. I let my family down. I let my attorneys down. I can only say I’m sorry. It was a momentary lapse in judgment.”
“Perhaps I talk too much,” he added, though that was redundant.
Stone previously had issued an apology for posting the closeup photo of U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson, featuring a gun’s crosshairs next to her head.
In the Washington, D.C., courthouse where he will stand trial later this year, Stone continued to insist he didn’t recognize the crosshairs in the photo when it was posted. He claimed one of his “volunteers” had done the posting but could not name the person.
On Instagram, the photo was accompanied by a message from Stone:
Through legal trickery Deep State hitman Robert Mueller has guaranteed that my upcoming show trial is before Judge Amy Berman Jackson, an Obama appointed judge who dismissed the Benghazi charges again[st] Hillary Clinton and incarcerated Paul Manafort prior to his conviction for any time. #fixisin Help me fight for my life at @StoneDefenseFund.com
Not surprisingly, Berman Jackson said Thursday that his apology rang hollow. The no-nonsense judge called the message of the Instagram post “sinister,” said there is nothing ambiguous about crosshairs and that the post appeared intended to incite others, posing a threat.
Stone was arrested in a pre-dawn raid on his Florida home last month and indicted by a grand jury. He was charged with lying to Congress about the fact he communicated with Wikileaks at the request of someone in the Trump campaign. He also was charged with witness tampering, for telling his alleged co-conspirator to do “a Frank Pentangeli“ — a reference to The Godfather Part II.
Stone, whose political history dates to the Nixon administration, bragged that the FBI stormed his house with “greater force than used to take down Bin Laden”