Man sentenced for shootings cover-up, sexual enticement of minor

OAKLAND, Calif. (BCN) — A far-right, anti-government militia member was sentenced to 126 months in prison on Monday for obstructing justice in an investigation into the shooting of law enforcement officers in Oakland and enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity, the US Department of Justice announced.

Robert Blancas, 35, from the Bay Area, is a member of the “Grizzly Scouts,” a militia group loosely connected to the so-called “boogaloo” militias, which are anti-law enforcement and anti-government extremists. On May 29, 2020, a two Federal Protective Security Officers at the Oakland federal building were shot by a Grizzly Scout, who killed federal officer David Patrick Underwood and seriously injured the other officer during the George Floyd protests in the city.

The same Grizzly Scout was also involved in a shootout with sheriff’s deputies in Santa Cruz County in June of 2020. Blancas, a self-described “1st Lieutenant” in the militia, admitted in his plea agreement to obstructing the investigation into the shootings to protect his fellow Grizzly Scout.

He and his co-defendants admitted to destroying evidence in an attempt to affect the investigations. Before being indicted for obstruction in March of 2021, Blancas was arrested in December of 2020 for enticing a 15-year-old girl to repeatedly make and send him pornographic photographs and videos of herself.

Blancas admitted to knowing that she was underage and receiving more than 100 pornographic photos and videos from the victim, all while exchanging thousands of messages with her and speaking to her via audio and video calls. Last year, Blancas pleaded guilty to three counts of obstruction of justice, one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice by destroying records in an official proceeding, and two counts of destroying records in an official proceeding.

He also pleaded guilty to enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity. Blancas will receive a ten year term of supervised release after he serves his sentence in prison.

Blancas was the last of four men convicted in the cover-up of the shootings, who were Jessie Rush, 29, of Turlock; Simon Ybarra, 23, of Los Gatos, and Kenny Miksch, 21, of San Lorenzo.

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