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Camp Pendleton Marine pleads guilty in Jan. 6 Capitol breach case

Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Base sign outside the main gate of the base. (UT File Photo/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS)

A Marine stationed at Camp Pendleton who allegedly told a social media acquaintance that he was waiting for “Civil war 2” has pleaded guilty to participating in the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

Cpl. Micah Coomer pleaded guilty on May 17 in federal court in Washington, D.C., to one misdemeanor count of parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. He faces up to six months in jail and up to five years of probation when sentenced.

A Camp Pendleton-based spokesperson said last week that Coomer is still on active duty and still assigned to the same position he was at the time of his arrest in January, as a system engineer for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems with 1st Radio Battalion, I Marine Expeditionary Force Information Group. reported that it was unclear if Coomer, who would have required a security clearance for his intelligence job, still held such a clearance two days after his guilty plea.

Coomer, who enlisted in 2018 and became a corporal in 2020, faces the potential for administrative action by the Marine Corps, including possible discharge, according to a Marine Corps manual.

“The Marine Corps is fully cooperating with the ongoing Department of Justice proceedings,” a spokesperson for the I Marine Expeditionary Force wrote in a statement. “The Marine Corps does not comment on ongoing legal matters to preserve the integrity of the disposition decision process under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.”

As part of his plea agreement, Coomer agreed to an interview with law enforcement and a review of his social media accounts and postings from around the time of the Capitol riot. Prosecutors promised not to charge him with additional offenses arising from that interview and social media review unless any such potential crimes were violent in nature.

According to a criminal complaint, it was an Instagram post by Coomer that prompted the investigation against him and two other Marines and ultimately led to all three being charged.

That post included several photos from outside and inside the Capitol building. In the caption, Coomer wrote “Glad to be apart of history.”

FBI agents later served a warrant for access to the Instagram account and allegedly discovered messages containing conspiracy theories about the 2020 presidential election.

Coomer allegedly wrote to one Instagram user that “everything in this country is corrupt. We honestly need a fresh restart. I’m waiting for the boogaloo.”

The “Boogaloo” movement is a loose network whose adherents, known as Boogaloo Bois, often espouse anti-government views and a hope for or belief in a coming civil war. When the other user asked Coomer what he meant by “boogaloo,” Coomer allegedly responded, “Civil war 2.”

According to a statement of offense that Coomer signed as part of his plea agreement, he admitted that on Jan. 6, he drove to Washington from “his military post in Virginia” along with Sgt. Joshua Abate and Sgt. Dodge Dale Hellonen. Coomer admitted to spending about 50 minutes inside the Capitol, mostly in the Rotunda, where the trio took photos of themselves with a statue that they adorned with a red “Make America Great Again” hat.

Court records show Abate and Hellonen are set for plea agreement hearings on June 12. Coomer is scheduled to be sentenced in August.


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