The Justice Department has charged two men accused of carrying zip ties during Wednesday’s uprising at the Capitol, officials said in a statement.
Eric Gavelek Munchel, a 30-year-old Nashville resident, and Larry Rendell Brock, 53, of Grapevine, Tex., were each arrested and charged Sunday with knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building and violent entry and disorderly conduct. Authorities said Brock entered the Capitol wearing a green helmet, tactical test, and “a white flex cuff, which is used by law enforcement to restrain and/or detain subjects.” They accused Munchel of carrying “plastic restraints,” and an “item in a holster on his right hip.”
Officials said they identified Brock, a father of three and retired Air Force veteran who served as deputy director of its admissions liaison officer program, after two people came forward to identify him after seeing photographs, including his ex-wife.
In an interview with The New Yorker, Brock denied that he had brought the zip ties with him, but said he wore the tactical gear for self-protection. “I didn’t want to get stabbed or hurt” by “BLM or Antifa,” Brock said, adding that he found the zip ties on the ground. “I wish I had not picked those up. My thought process there was I would pick them up and give them to an officer when I see one. … I didn’t do that because I had put them in my coat, and I honestly forgot about them.”
Munchel and his 57-year-old mother, Lisa Marie Eisenhart, identified themselves in an interview with The Sunday Times as they were leaving Washington. “It was a kind of flexing of muscles,” Munchel said. “The intentions of going in were not to fight the police. The point of getting inside the building is to show them that we can, and we will.”
The Justice Department said the cases were being handled by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Counterterrorism Section of the Justice Department’s National Security Division, in addition to state authorities.
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