UCLA student who was photographed sitting in Mike Pence’s chair during Capitol riot pleads guilty to obstruction charge

ByDavid M. Conte

May 20, 2022

Christian Secor sits in the seat of Mike Pence in the Senate on January 6, 2021.Department of Justice.

  • A California man pleaded guilty to one count of obstruction this week for his role in the Jan. 6 attack.

  • Christian Secor was arrested earlier this year after several people helped the FBI identify him.

  • Prosecutors say Secor’s far-right extremist views were well documented on social media.

A UCLA student who espoused extremist views online pleaded guilty to one count of obstruction this week after admitting serving on Vice President Mike Pence’s Senate Dias during the U.S. Capitol Riot. January 6.

Christian Secor23, from Costa Mesa, Calif., first faced ten counts related to the 2021 uprising, including one count of assaulting, resisting or obstructing officers. But as the government struggles to pursue the more than 800 people arrested as part of the attack, federal prosecutors offered some rioters lesser charges in exchange for their guilty pleas.

Prosecutors also agreed not to bring new charges against Secor for destroying digital evidence after he was accused of getting rid of his phone and car, moving into his mother’s basement and to brag about not getting caught after the attack, according to court documents.

Secor was arrested in February after 11 different people helped the FBI identify him. Prosecutors say Secor live-streamed the Capitol breach and was photographed sitting in Pence’s chair during the chaos.

Obstruction of official process carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, but The Washington Post reported that Secor is more likely to face 21 to 27 months or 53 to 61 months behind bars under federal advisory guidelines. His final sentencing, which is expected in October, will ultimately depend on whether or not he is found to have caused property damage or injury.

Uploading documents from earlier this year, investigators said Secor founded an unofficial club called “America First Bruins” while attending UCLA. the university student newspaper reported that he was active with the campus Republican group as recently as February 2020, when the organization said he was later banned for “inappropriate behavior”.

Following his arrest earlier this year, UCLA issued a statement condemning Secor’s alleged actions.

“What I can tell you is that UCLA believes the Jan. 6 attack on Capitol Hill was an attack on our democracy,” said Bill Kisliuk, director of media relations for the UCLA at the time. ‘UCLA, to the Daily Bruin. “As an institution, UCLA is committed to respecting each other, making decisions based on evidence, and using rational debate – not physical violence.”

Secor also belonged to a podcast group called America First, hosted by a known white nationalist Nicola Fuenteswhose far-right extremist beliefs were well documented, according to court documents.

Secor has also shared its own extremist views online, espousing hateful views toward immigrants and Jews, calling fascism an “epic” after the 2017 white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, and livestreaming under a referencing moniker. to UC Santa Barbara mass shooter who killed seven people in 2014, prosecutors said.

During the attack on the Capitol, Secor was seen carrying an “America First” blue flag and admitted in plea documents that he walked through Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office after entering the building. He was also part of a mob of rioters who pushed off officers trying to close a series of double doors, according to court documents.

A lawyer for Secor did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

Read the original article at Business Intern