Two men face federal charges for their alleged roles in the pro-Trump riot at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, the U.S. Attorney's Office for Washington, D.C. announced Sunday. One of the men, Eric Gavelek Munchel, was allegedly seen carrying zip ties into the Senate chamber during the chaos and is from Tennessee. The other man, Larry Rendell Brock of Texas, was allegedly seen carrying a white flex cuff.
Brock was arrested Sunday in Texas, the U.S. Attorney's office said. He was charged with "one count of knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority and one count of violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds." Brock was allegedly seen wearing a green helmet, green tactical vest, black and camouflage jacket, and beige pants while holding a white flex cuff. These are usually used by law enforcement to restrain subjects.
He is retired Lieutenant Colonel Larry Rendall Brock, Jr., a Texas-based Air Force Academy graduate and combat veteran. In an interview, Brock confirmed that he was the man in the photos and videos. https://t.co/F4lj7BiP8I— Adam Goldman (@adamgoldmanNYT) January 9, 2021
Brock confirmed to The New Yorker he was among the rioters who attended the insurrection. He is an Air Force Academy graduate, and he wore a yellow fleur de lies, the symbol of the 706th Fighter Squadron. Brock told the magazine he was not racist and repeated many of the same baseless claims President Donald Trump has made about election fraud. "The President asked for his supporters to be there to attend, and I felt like it was important, because of how much I love this country, to actually be there," Brock said. He also claimed he found the cuffs on the floor and regretted picking them up. He also claimed he was not in favor of vandalizing the Capitol. "I know it looks menacing. That was not my intent," he told the New Yorker.
Munchel was charged with "one count of knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority and one count of violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds." He was arrested in Tennessee. "Photos depicting his presence show a person who appears to be Munchel carrying plastic restraints, an item in a holster on his right hip, and a cell phone mounted on his chest with the camera facing outward, ostensibly to record events that day," the U.S. Attorney's Office's statement read.
BREAKING: He's being named by others now, so I can confirm results of the investigation: Eric Munchel from Nashville TN is #ZipTieGuy
His social media has now been locked down, but many of his posts are disturbing and include glorified violence. pic.twitter.com/xachNOyPLf— John Scott-Railton (@jsrailton) January 9, 2021
After he returned to Tennessee, Munchel spoke with The Sunday Times. He drove from Nashville to Washington, D.C. with his mother, Lisa Eisenhart, the Sunday Times reports. "We wanted to show that we're willing to rise up, band together, and fight if necessary," he said. "Same as our forefathers, who established this country in 1776."
Brock and Munchel are only two of the dozens who have been arrested since the riot. On Friday, the Justice Department announced 13 people were charged, and dozens of others were charged in Washington, D.C. Superior Court, reports the New York Times. Five people died due to injuries sustained during the insurrection, including a Capitol Police officer and a rioter shot by a police officer.