A Marine who said he was expecting “Civil War 2” and two other active duty military officers have been charged with involvement in the riot at the US Capitol, authorities said in newly filed court documents.
Micah Coomer, Joshua Abate and Dodge Dale Hellonen were arrested this week on misdemeanor charges after their fellow Marines helped investigators identify them in pictures among the pro-Trump mob on Jan. 6, 2021, according to the aforementioned court documents. .
Dozens of people charged in the riots have military backgrounds, but these three are among the few on active duty. Cameras caught a Marine Corps officer struggling with police and helping other mob members force their way into the Capitol. He was indicted in 2021.RELATED
No defense attorneys for the men were listed in the court file, so it was not immediately clear if they have attorneys commenting on their behalf.
Their service records show that they are all active duty Marines. Marine Corps spokesman Gen. Kevin Stephensen said he is aware of the allegations and is “fully cooperating with appropriate authorities in support of the investigation.”
Coomer, from Indiana, is stationed at Camp Pendleton in southern California; Abate, from Virginia, is at Fort Meade, in Maryland; and Hellonen, from Michigan, is stationed at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, according to the Marines.
According to authorities, the men spent about 52 minutes inside the Capitol. At one point, while in the roundabout, they attached a red “Make American Great Again” cap to a statue for photos to be taken with, according to court documents. Hellonen was carrying a “Don’t Tread on Me” banner, it was reported.
Coomer posted photos on Instagram that appeared to be taken inside the Capitol with the caption “Glad to be a part of history,” the court documents reflect. Days after the 2020 election, he and another person discussed via Instagram message how he believed the election was rigged.
And in late January 2021, he told another person in a message that “everything in this country is corrupt.”
“Honestly, we need a fresh start. I’m waiting for the boogaloo,” Coomer wrote in a message detailed in court documents. When the person asked him what “a boogaloo” was, Coomer replied “Civil war 2,” according to authorities.
Boogaloo is an extremist anti-government, pro-gun movement. His name is a reference to a popular language term to refer to an aftermath, in this case, a second civil war in the United States. The move is named after “Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo,” a 1984 sequel to a breakdancing movie.
His supporters have turned up at protests over COVID-19 lockdown orders and protests over racial injustice, carrying rifles and wearing tactical gear over Hawaiian shirts. The shirts are a reference to the “big luau,” a riff on the term “boogaloo” sometimes favored by members of the group.
In June, during an interview related to his security clearance, Abate acknowledged having walked through the Capitol with two “colleagues,” according to investigators. Abate said that “they walked and tried not to get hit by the tear gas.”
According to the Pentagon, Abate was stationed with the Marine Cryptologic Support Battalion, which supports the National Security Agency. The NSA, one of the largest intelligence agencies in the United States, spies on electronic communications around the world and plays a critical role in deterring cyberattacks and foreign influence operations.
An NSA spokesman declined to answer questions about when the agency learned of Abate’s statement that he had entered the Capitol or whether it took steps before his arrest to restrict his access to classified information.
The trio faces charges including trespassing and disorderly conduct.
Among the defendants with military records on January 6 were members of the far-right group Oath Keepers, accused of conspiring to violently keep President Donald Trump in power. The group’s leader, Stewart Rhodes, a former Army paratrooper, was convicted of seditious conspiracy in November.
A Virginia Navy reservist accused of storming the Capitol was convicted this week on charges of illegally possessing silencers disguised to look like cleaning supplies. Hatchet Speed is scheduled to go on trial in his case from January 6 to the end of this year.
And a former US Army reservist described by prosecutors as a Nazi sympathizer was found guilty of storming the Capitol to prevent Congress from certifying President Joe Biden’s election victory. Timothy Hale-Cusanelli, who worked as a security contractor at a Navy base, was sentenced to four years in prison in September.
Nearly 1,000 people have been charged so far in the riots, with the number rising every week. Nearly 500 people have pleaded guilty to riot-related charges and more than three dozen have been convicted at trial.