On January 6, 2021, Christian Secor, a student at UCLA, broke into the United States Capitol with hundreds of rioters, entering the chambers of the Senate while carrying a movement’s flag. anti-immigration and anti-radicalism, and recently took the seat. vacated by former Vice President Mike Pence.
Not long after, Secor tweeted that Trump supporters should be “proud” of the Capitol riots, in which more than 140 police officers were injured. “One day has accomplished more for conservationism than in the past 30 years,” Mr Written.
On Wednesday, 24-year-old Secor was sentenced to three and a half years in prison. At the beginning of this year, Mr pleaded guilty obstructing a formal proceeding, a felony.
Judge Trevor McFadden, who was nominated for federal court by former President Donald Trump, said Secor’s conduct was “as blatant and obstructing as any [he’s] from that date without including actual violence. “
The probation office recommended a reduction in sentencing guidelines as Secor took responsibility for his actions, and the defense sent a letter in support of Secor regretting it.
However, McFadden told Secor, “I’m not sure I’ve actually seen that from you, sir.”
Assistant US Attorney Kimberly Paschall, the prosecutor in the case, highlighted Secor’s enthusiasm for guns and his involvement with America First, which the government calls an extremist group.
“It is ideology, along with action, that is in government concern,” says Paschall.
She also said that Secor’s specific presence in the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and in Vice President Mike Pence’s chair on the Senate Floor, was related to his previous comments on the Civil War.
That background, Paschall said, “makes him more reprehensible in the eyes of the government than someone who walked in, saw the gyroscope, and walked away.”
The Justice Department asked the court to sentence Secor to just under five years in prison.
In addition to storming the Capitol, prosecutors raised concerns about Secor’s bulk purchases from gun and tactical gear retailers, a GoPro video showed him wielding an AR-style rifle. -15 in his room and his discussion in text messages about conducting a “future of “extremely secretive” operation after January 6.
At his hearing, Secor declined to speak, other than to say that the “activity” mentioned in those messages was a business idea rather than any violence.
Prosecutors also speak Six days after the riot, an associate texted Secor about buying a gun: “Hey man, do you make any Glocks or ARs for sale?”
“Never say anything remotely of that nature that isn’t safe [sic] row. We’re in a civil war, “Secor is said to have answered.” The short answer is no. ”
Secor also allegedly searched on Google, “you can find gun owners with serial numbers.”
Secor’s attorney, Brandi Harden, told the court that Secor “likes the ability to combine guns in a legal way,” but that has nothing to do with the January 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol.
She also made it clear that Secor did not bring a gun to the Capitol.
“If his plan was to take over, as the government wants you to believe, he could have packaged it up,” Harden said.
Secor requested a sentence of two years of probation, with no jail time. His defense noted that he did not commit any violence during the Capitol riots and argued that his youth was conducive to clemency, citing research on development of a person’s prefrontal cortex in their 20s.
“This late development of the prefrontal cortex may partly explain, but not an excuse, why Christian was able to make the choices he made on January 6,” the attorney said. his Written. “His immaturity, coupled with his lack of judgment, has brought him to where he is today.”
While at UCLA, Secor led a campus group called America First Bruins – named after the school’s mascot, as well as an extremist movement led by a far-right livestreamer named Nick Fuentes led.
Fuentes, in the words of DOJ prosecutors, “was a public figure known for his racist statements, glorifying fascism, and promoting white supremacy.” He expressed donate on domestic violence against women, and promote the tenets of Holocaust denial. His followers often refer to themselves as “Groypers”, a reference to the “Pepe The Frog” meme that has become popular on the far right.
Secor elevated Fuentes’ political movement at UCLA, and also made anti-immigrant and anti-socialist comments, according to court documents and Interview with other students. In tweets cited by prosecutors, Secor speak that fascism “sounds grandiose” and said while he supported “nationalism”, he did not support “radical Jews in terms of representation in politically related fields. “
After Trump lost the 2020 presidential election, Fuentes helped organize “Stop The Steal” rallies and cheered crowds of Trump supporters in Washington, DC on January 6. a “glorious day” and said, “The siege of the Capitol was f***ing great.” The congressional committee investigating the Capitol attack issued summons to Fuentes for documents and testimony. Fuentes has not been charged with any crime in connection with the Capitol riots.
In addition to Secor, federal prosecutors have carry-on fee about several other Fuentes followers who were accused of trespassing on the Capitol.
UCLA student Oona Flood raised concerns about Secor and his extremist rhetoric on campus before he joined the Capitol riots. Contacted by phone the Wednesday after Secor’s sentencing, Flood said they hope the jail sentence sends a message to far-right students that, “just because you’re young, you can’t escape everything rank.”
However, Flood warned that extremist rhetoric at UCLA has not subsided since the Capitol riots and allegations against Secor.
Flood, who now leads UCLA’s college Democrats, says: “They’re just as radical as they were before.
Despite Flood’s reservations about the criminal justice system, they say, “at least there’s a little bit of the glory of justice.”