An Orange County man was arrested Jan. 28 for allegedly trespassing on Capitol grounds earlier this month during the electoral college vote count.
Mark Simon, 49, of Huntington Beach, was arrested by the FBI on federal charges of trespassing and participating in unlawful activities on Capitol grounds.
He was at the Capitol Jan. 6 when thousands flocked to the nation’s capital to address their concerns about election integrity. The rally became unruly after protesters stormed the building.
During an interview with The Epoch Times shortly after the riots, Mark Simon said he believed the events were overblown by the media.
He told The Epoch Times he attended the rally in support of former President Donald Trump, and to ensure a free and fair election. He said he saw many “frustrated patriots” attending the rally who “just wanted to be heard.”
“I believe what we’re dealing with is just following the Constitution,” he said. “It’s not just a piece of paper. It’s the foundation of our country.”
His arrest came after an FBI agent discovered a blog post at orangejuiceblog.com that appeared to show a video of Simon in the Capitol shouting “In the Capitol baby, yeah!” and “2021 Donald Trump!” according to an FBI affidavit dated Jan. 21.
The video showed a group of protestors pushing against the Capitol police standing in the hallway of the Capitol building entrance.
The video was initially posted on the Facebook page of someone who was with Simon with the comment “Peacefully Storming the Capital” and hashtag “StopTheSteal,” according to the agent’s affidavit. The post was taken down but later resurfaced on orangejuiceblog.com.
The affidavit alleges that Huntington Beach police detectives were contacted by the agency. Detectives described Simon as a “known activist” in the city.
Simon was scheduled to make his initial court appearance Jan. 28 in front of a federal judge in Santa Ana. He was released on a $25,000 bond.