Camp Pendleton-based Marine among 3 charged with breaching Capitol on Jan. 6

Side-by-side photos of a man in his military ID, Instagram photo and inside the Capitol
Federal authorities said they used Micah Coomer’s military ID card and Instagram profile photo to help match images of him breaching the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

A Marine based at Camp Pendleton who allegedly told a social media acquaintance that he was waiting for “Civil war 2” has been charged with four federal crimes in connection with the Jan. 6, 2021, storming of the U.S. Capitol, according to a federal complaint unsealed Thursday.

Federal prosecutors in Washington charged Micah Coomer and two other active-duty Marines with four counts each relating to disorderly conduct, entering restricted grounds and parading inside a Capitol building.

FBI agents arrested Coomer on Tuesday in Oceanside near the Marine Corps base, according to an arrest warrant. Co-defendant Joshua Abate was arrested Tuesday at Ft. Meade, Md., just outside Washington. The other defendant, Dodge Dale Hellonen, was arrested Wednesday near Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.


Camp Pendleton officials could not be reached for comment Thursday afternoon. It was not immediately clear Thursday whether Coomer had an attorney.

In the more than two years since the storming of the Capitol, authorities have arrested more than 950 people, according to the Department of Justice. A handful of people charged have local ties, and Ocean Beach resident Ashli Babbitt was shot and killed that day inside the Capitol.

Coomer, Abate and Hellonen are among 12 service members who have been charged, according to reporting by

Two men carrying a flag among a mob inside the Capitol
Micah Coomer, red circle, is seen in the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, along with fellow U.S. Marine Joshua Abate, green circle.

The outlet, citing records provided by the Marine Corps, reported that Coomer is a corporal assigned to 1st Radio Battalion, I Marine Expeditionary Force Information Group, as a system engineer for intelligence and reconnaissance systems.

The two other Marines also worked in intelligence, according to Abate, a sergeant, is assigned to the Marine Corps’ Cryptologic Support Battalion at Ft. Meade, an Army base, as a signals intelligence operator and analyst. Hellonen, also a sergeant, is assigned to the 3rd Marine Raider Support Battalion at Camp Lejeune as a signals intelligence operator and analyst.


A statement of facts written by an FBI agent includes photographs of the three men inside the Capitol side-by-side with photos from their military identification cards. The agent’s statement, included as part of the criminal complaint, alleges that an Instagram post by Coomer prompted the investigation against him and the other Marines.

“Glad to be apart of history,” Coomer wrote as a caption below several photos from outside and inside the Capitol building, according to investigators. Three screenshots showing photos from the post are included in the criminal complaint.

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FBI agents later served a warrant for access to the Instagram account. According to the criminal complaint, several days after the election, Coomer wrote to another Instagram user: “I just love how after years of trying to get trump out of office by any means the left all of a sudden is going to have a ‘fair’ election. They’re an absolute joke.”

As part of the same conversation, he claimed that “One of my buddies here got a ballot for his cat that died three years ago. It’s literally a joke to them.”

On Jan. 31, 2021, about three weeks after the Capitol breach, Coomer told another user that “everything in this country is corrupt. We honestly need a fresh restart. I’m waiting for the boogaloo,” according to the complaint.

The “boogaloo” movement is a loose far-right network whose adherents 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 responded, “Civil war 2,” according to the complaint.


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Federal agents identified images they said show Coomer inside the Capitol wearing a sweatshirt, a jacket and a red “Make America Great Again” hat. Investigators said photos of that person matched Coomer’s Indiana driver’s license, military identification card and Instagram profile photo.

Images showed the three Marines spent about 50 minutes inside the Capitol, with most of that time spent in the Rotunda, where they took photos of themselves with a statue that they adorned with a red “MAGA” hat, according to the criminal complaint.

Other Marines helped FBI agents confirm the identities of all three men, and in June of last year, Abate was interviewed as part of his security clearance and admitted to entering the Capitol “with two ‘buddies,’” according to the complaint. He told his interviewer that they walked around the building “and tried not to get hit with tear gas,” and one of his friends smoked a cigarette in the Rotunda.

“Abate also admitted he heard how the event was being portrayed negatively and decided that he should not tell anybody about going into the U.S. Capitol Building,” the FBI agent wrote.