A Tennessee man and his mom had been sentenced to jail on Friday for in search of to intimidate lawmakers by marching with matching tactical vests and carrying zip tie-style handcuffs through the Jan. 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol, federal prosecutors mentioned.
The person, Eric Munchel, 32, of Nashville, who grew to become recognized on social media as “Zip Tie Man,” was sentenced to almost 5 years in jail, the Justice Division mentioned. His mom, Lisa Marie Eisenhart, 59, of Woodstock, Ga., was sentenced to 2 and a half years in jail, the division mentioned.
They had been fined $2,000 every, and their jail phrases will probably be adopted by two and a half years of supervised launch.
The 2 had been discovered responsible in April of conspiracy to commit obstruction, obstruction of an official continuing, disorderly conduct in a Capitol constructing and parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol constructing, in accordance with court docket paperwork.
Mr. Munchel was additionally discovered responsible of two different felonies associated to carrying weapons on Capitol grounds.
Mr. Munchel, carrying paramilitary gear, traveled together with his mom to Washington on Jan. 6, 2021, and left the Grand Hyatt that afternoon, in accordance with court docket paperwork.
Ms. Eisenhart, carrying a flannel shirt beneath her tactical vest and a pink “Hold America Nice Once more” beanie, and her son had “ready for violence on Jan. 6 and projected their willingness to have interaction in it” by carrying tactical vests, prosecutors mentioned.
Their legal professionals didn’t instantly reply to calls in search of touch upon Friday night, however they defended their shoppers in court docket filings as People who had discovered themselves caught up within the occasions of that day and had no unwell intent.
Mr. Munchel’s lawyer, Joseph Allen, wrote in a sentencing memo that Mr. Munchel “regrets his illegal conduct and has accepted accountability for it, actions which exhibit his character.”
Ms. Eisenhart’s lawyer, Gregory Smith, mentioned in a court docket submitting that tactical gear “will be worn for defensive or offensive causes,” and that his shopper had been “law-abiding, respectful and compliant” ever since she turned herself in to the F.B.I. weeks after Jan. 6, 2021.
As Choose Royce Lamberth of america District Courtroom for the District of Columbia sentenced them, Ms. Eisenhart locked arms together with her son whereas each stood collectively at a podium, The Related Press reported.
Greater than 1,100 individuals from practically all 50 states have been arrested in reference to crimes associated to the Capitol riot, in accordance with the Justice Division.
On Jan. 6, 2021, Mr. Munchel and Ms. Eisenhart “noticed different rioters combating with police and inspired them to take action,” the Justice Division mentioned.
They pushed previous police traces, entered the Capitol constructing and stole zip tie handcuffs from the U.S. Capitol Police, utilizing them to implicitly threaten members of Congress as soon as they reached the Senate chamber, prosecutors argued.
They then “brazenly declared to a reporter that their intent in storming and getting into the Capitol was to intimidate Congress,” court docket information state.
Mr. Munchel additionally carried a Taser and “different weapons” into the Capitol constructing, in accordance with court docket information, which didn’t elaborate on the weapons.
Courtroom information present some perception into the mother-son dynamic that performed out that day, with each egging one another on as they inspired different rioters to additionally advance and achieve floor.
After they joined different rioters exterior the Capitol constructing, Mr. Munchel had affixed to his chest a telephone to report his actions and people of his mom, who at one level, court docket information state, was heard yelling, “Push, push!” and “Struggle ‘em!”
At one level through the riot, Ms. Eisenhart supplied a phrase of recommendation to her son as they made their solution to the Capitol.
“We’re going straight to federal jail if we go in there with weapons,” she advised Mr. Munchel, in accordance with court docket information.
“Yeah,” he replied. “That’s why I’m not stepping into there.”
They shed a few of their weapons earlier than getting into the Capitol, prosecutors mentioned.
When officers who had been overwhelmed by rioters started to retreat, Ms. Eisenhart advised her son, “Let’s go,” they usually resumed their advance.
At one other level, they talked in regards to the presence of pepper spray within the air, and folks round them might be heard coughing on Mr. Munchel’s recording.
He advised his mom to cowl her face with a bandanna as a result of “it’s going to get spicy.”
Prosecutors mentioned that “the illegality and affect of their actions was not misplaced on” Mr. Munchel or Ms. Eisenhart, who was heard saying within the Senate Gallery that she was going to get arrested “proper this minute.”
Earlier than leaving, Mr. Munchel advised his mom to get rid of the zip ties, prosecutors mentioned. They spent about 12 minutes contained in the Capitol.
He was arrested on Jan. 10, 2021.
On Jan. 7, 2021, Mr. Munchel and his mom each gave interviews to The London Occasions.
“What’s America for?” Ms. Eisenhart advised the paper. “I’d moderately die as a 57-year-old girl than dwell underneath oppression. I’d moderately die and would moderately combat.”