California Man Found Guilty of Felony Charges Related to Capitol Breach

California Man Found Guilty of Felony Charges Related to Capitol Breach

            WASHINGTON – A California man was found guilty in the District of Columbia of felony charges for his actions during the January 6, 2021, Capitol breach. His actions and the actions of others disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress convened to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the presidential election.

            Sean Michael McHugh, 35, of Auburn, California, was found guilty yesterday, following a stipulated bench trial, of obstruction and assaulting, impeding, or interfering with law enforcement officers. U.S. District Court Judge John D. Bates scheduled a sentencing hearing for September 7, 2023.

            According to evidence presented in court, McHugh was on the Lower West Terrace on the afternoon of January 6 where he was captured on video footage and audio assaulting multiple U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) officers. McHugh is captured on video carrying a cannister of bear spray in a holster on his hip and discharging the bear spray into a line of USCP officers. Metropolitan Police Department body worn camera video and audio captures McHugh yelling at officers, among other things, “You’re protecting communists!”; “There is a Second Amendment behind us, what are you going to do then?”; and “You ain’t holding the line!” At approximately 1:40 p.m., McHugh, along with other rioters, pushed a large metal sign into a line of uniformed police officers while McHugh yelled into his megaphone, “Put it up there! Put it up there!”

            The case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of California.

            The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office, as well as the Metropolitan Police Department, with significant assistance provided by the FBI’s Sacramento Field Office.

            In the 27 months since January 6, more than 1,000 individuals have been arrested on charges related to the Jan. 6 Capitol breach, including more than 320 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement. The investigation remains ongoing.

            Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit

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