Feds bust Novi man in U.S. Capitol siege as crackdown on rioters continues

Robert Snell
The Detroit News
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Detroit — A Novi man bragged about almost dying while breaking into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, according to the FBI, and he is being held without bond Friday after becoming the 11th person from Michigan charged in connection with the siege.

Trevor Brown, 29, left a trail of online evidence for FBI agents to follow before arresting him Thursday, including using a photo of the siege as his Facebook banner and boasting about breaking in, and was captured on video shouting into a bullhorn as rioters entered the Capitol tunnel and assaulted police officers, according to an affidavit filed in federal court.

FBI agents said Trevor Brown joined other rioters at the lower west terrace entranceway of the Capitol during the Jan. 6 siege.

“We the people need one more solid rally like this and CONgress (sic) will be forced to bow and be thrown out for not representing the will of the people and charged with crimes against humanity," one post on his Facebook account reads, according to the affidavit.

Brown is being held without bond pending a detention hearing Tuesday in federal court in Detroit and his arrest came during a broader crackdown on the Jan. 6 insurrection that has led to more than 500 people being charged nationwide. He is facing several charges, including obstruction of law enforcement during a civil disorder, breaking into a restricted building and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds.

His court-appointed lawyer Leon Parker could not be reached for comment immediately Friday.

Brown was arrested Jan. 6 after officers near the lower west terrace spotted him at the front of a crowd of rioters trying to break into the Capitol, according to the affidavit.

In the weeks after the siege, tipsters shared links to social media photos and videos with FBI investigators.

Agents reviewed posts prior to the siege in which Brown expressed dissatisfaction with the 2020 presidential election and U.S. government, according to the affidavit.

“This whole election has been the biggest s--- show in the world,” one post read.

“The only path to normalcy is over throwing (sic) the dictators,” he wrote in another post. “We compiled (sic) with the shutdowns. now its masks, now its vaccines. it won’t stop. they are manipulating.”

The day after the siege, Brown, who lists his occupation as a business consultant, defended his actions in an online post.

Trevor Brown is shown in a video recorded during the Jan. 6 siege, according to the FBI.

"People should be storming that Brothel we call the Capitol everyday for what goes on in there," the post reads. "It’s a Brothel and they sell you out everyday. Everyday. And putting any sort of credibility on anything those whores do in the full Congress is just stupidity. And that is the fault of the leadership on both sides."

Brown mentioned in one post that the trip was his first visit to Washington, D.C.

“Who knew the first time I’d go to DC I’d be storming the Capitol. — and make it in….," the post reads. “I made it into the Capitol. I almost died getting in but I made it.”

Investigators say Trevor Brown used a bullhorn during the siege while pushing closer to the entrance of a tunnel leading into the U.S. Capitol.

In another post, Brown oddly said he "breeched the White House," according to the government.

Ten other people from Michigan have been charged during the ongoing investigation. They are:

• Steven Thurlow, 50, a gunsmith from St. Clair Shores. He is accused of breaking in, climbing on a conference table and joining rioters during the Capitol siege

• Anthony Michael Puma, 49, of Brownstown Township. He is accused of breaking into the U.S. Capitol and threatening to kill "commie bastards" during a looming war.

• Jeramiah Caplinger, 25, of Taylor. Federal agents said he was identified as being in the Capitol on Jan. 6 through still images from YouTube and social media wearing "a red bucket hat," a "striped shirt" and carrying a "carrying a tree branch with a flag attached."

• Karl Dresch, 40, of Calumet, who is being held without bond, is accused of illegally entering the Capitol. Prosecutors shared photographs posted on Facebook, including one with the title “We are in" that a U.S. Capitol police officer confirmed shows the inside of the U.S. Capitol Building. The photo shows "specifically, the 'Crypt,' a location under the rotunda in the center of the Capitol," according to a court filing.

• Jeremy Sorvisto, 37, of Hancock, who is accused of traveling with Dresch and breaking into the Capitol.

• Anthony Robert Williams, 45, of Troy, who is free on bond. Williams is accused of breaking into the U.S. Capitol in January and bragging how he "pushed back the cops."

• Daniel Herendeen, 43, of Chesterfield Township and Bobby Schornak, 39, of Roseville were charged with obstructing Congress, breaking into the Capitol and disorderly conduct. They are free on bond.

• Michael Joseph Foy, 30, of Wixom. Federal prosecutors said Foy on Jan. 6 struck law enforcement at least 10 times with a hockey stick that had carried a President Donald Trump flag earlier in the day. Foy, who is being held without bond, later rallied others to climb through broken windows in the U.S. Capitol, prosecutors said, citing a YouTube video and police body camera footage. 

• James Allen Mels, 56, of Shelby Township. Mels posted selfies after entering the Capitol and told investigators he traveled to Washington, D.C., with 11 other "like-minded Patriots" because "he believed the 2020 presidential election to have been fraudulently decided," according to a federal court filing. The sheet metal worker was released on a $10,000 unsecured bond following an initial appearance in federal court in Detroit.

rsnell@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @robertsnellnews

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