FBI Arrests Man Who Carried Zip Ties Into Capitol


The F.B.I. arrested two men on Sunday who were photographed in the Senate chamber clad in military-style clothing and holding zip ties, according to a statement issued by the Justice Department.

One of the men, Eric Gavelek Munchel, 30, was taken into custody in Nashville on one count of unlawfully entering a restricted building and one count of violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds, the department said. One of the officials involved in the case said authorities also recovered several weapons at the time of his arrest.

The department also said that photographs of a person who appeared to be Mr. Munchel showed him “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.”

Efforts to reach Mr. Munchel before his arrest were unsuccessful.

The other man, Larry Rendell Brock, was arrested in Texas on the same charges after he was allegedly identified as one of the people who broke into the Capitol. The department said in its statement that images of a person who appeared to be him showed Mr. Brock clad in “a green helmet, green tactical vest with patches, black and camo jacket, and beige pants holding a white flex cuff, which is used by law enforcement to restrain and/or detain subjects.”

Mr. Brock’s ex-wife contacted the F.B.I. on Friday to say that she recognized him in a photograph taken inside the Capitol building during the riot, according to an F.B.I. affidavit.

“When I saw this was happening, I was afraid he would be there,” she told investigators, according to the affidavit. “It is such a good picture of him and I recognize his patch.”

A second witness who identified Mr. Brock in photographs taken inside the building noted that the suspect had pilot wings on his chest in the picture, and that Mr. Brock was an Air Force pilot, the affidavit said. The witness also said that Mr. Brock worked at L3 Technologies, a defense contractor, and that his contacts at the company “knew he was flying to Washington, D.C.,” the witness told investigators.

The two men are among the more than a dozen people charged by federal authorities in connection with the attack on Congress. Internet researchers pieced together what was thought to be their identities in the days after the siege. Investigators in Washington, Tennessee and Texas are working on the cases; and the cases will be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington and the counterterrorism section of the Justice Department’s National Security Division.

Mr. Munchel traveled to Washington with his mother, Lisa Eisenhart, and the pair said in an interview with The Times of London that they broke into the Capitol to observe the action, and that they left after rioters talked about stealing electronics and government papers.

But Mr. Munchel also said that he and his mother “wanted to show that we’re willing to rise up, band together and fight if necessary,” and he compared himself and his mother to the Founding Fathers.

“I’d rather die as a 57-year-old woman than live under oppression,” Ms. Eisenhart told The Times of London. “I’d rather die and would rather fight.”



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