Ex-Houston law enforcement officer billed in Capitol riot just after FBI agents find deleted selfies on mobile phone

Pamela G. Knowles

A previous veteran Houston law enforcement officer was federally billed Tuesday in connection with the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol just after agents reported they searched his mobile phone and uncovered deleted selfies taken inside the constructing.

Houston’s law enforcement main claimed past week that the officer, Tam Pham, had resigned.

Pham initially advised authorities during an interview Jan. 12 at his residence in Richmond, Texas, that he traveled to Washington, D.C., for a company vacation, in accordance to an affidavit attained Wednesday by NBC News. He reported he briefly attended President Donald Trump’s rally right after getting discovered about it on Fb, but he denied next the group to the Capitol, FBI Specific Agent Amie Stemen wrote in the affidavit.

Previous Houston law enforcement Officer Tam Pham.Received by KPRC

The research of his mobile phone exposed normally. Brokers discovered online video of him inside the Capitol in his folder of deleted photos. Between the images ended up portraits of the Capitol Rotunda, a selfie inside of the historic creating and a image of him posing with a statue of President Gerald R. Ford draped in a Trump 2020 flag.

The time stamp on the photographs and movies placed him within the Capitol at the time of the siege, authorities said.

Following investigators warned him that it was illegal to lie, Pham admitted that he joined rally attendees at the Capitol, according to the affidavit. He said he jumped barricades surrounding the making but experienced no intention to dedicate violence or vandalism, Stemen wrote.

Pham instructed investigators that he entered the Rotunda and remained for about 10 to 15 minutes to “appear at the historic art on the walls,” in accordance to the affidavit.

He was charged with just one count of knowingly entering or remaining in any limited making or grounds without the need of lawful authority and 1 rely of violent entry and disorderly carry out on Capitol grounds, documents demonstrate.

Nicole Hochglaube, Pham’s attorney, claimed in an electronic mail Wednesday that Pham cooperated with the FBI and “prays for the accomplishment of the incoming Biden administration.”

“He is deeply saddened to be related with the domestic terrorists who attacked our Capitol on January 6th, thinks strongly in the rule of regulation, and that the election picking President Biden was truthful and absolutely free,” she explained.

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Police Main Artwork Acevedo introduced Jan. 14 on Twitter that Pham, who had been with the department for 18 several years, experienced resigned.

On Wednesday, Acevedo explained in a assertion on Twitter that he and the FBI right away introduced an investigation when they caught wind of Pham’s participation.

He stated the law enforcement office was auditing the arrests designed by the previous officer to ensure that there ended up “no irregularities.”

At a cadet welcome education occasion Tuesday, he reprimanded Pham and other police officers across the country who participated in the mob.

“If everyone in this home correct now believes that everyone necessary to be in the Capitol developing, you want to test out,” Acevedo mentioned. “You will not survive in this office with that mentality.”

He claimed that the division was looking into other officers who stormed the Capitol and that no other instances had been discovered.

Pham was between dozens of pro-Trump rioters whom federal investigators have been searching for soon after the riot, which still left 5 folks lifeless, which includes a police officer.

Amid many others going through costs are two Virginia police officers, a West Virginia legislator, an Arizona QAnon supporter observed carrying a 6-foot spear and a Florida man photographed with Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s lectern.

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