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Capitol Police Told to ‘Stand Down’ Ahead of Jan. 6 Uprising

"The report magnifies suspicions over why House leadership refused to hold hearings with key witnesses before the second Trump impeachment..."

A new inspector general’s report further shredded already debunked leftist narratives about the Jan. 6 uprising at the US Capitol.

Capitol Police Inspector General Michael A. Bolton submitted the 104-page document titled “Review of the Events Surrounding the Jan. 6, 2021, Takeover of the U.S. Capitol” in advance of testimony before the House Administration Committee on Thursday.

Even the New York Times was forced to acknowledge after reviewing the report that the mostly peaceful protest was not spontaneously incited by President Donald Trump.

According to the Times, some of the salient findings in the report included:

  • Capitol Police leaders ignored or overlooked intelligence reports warning of attacks on lawmakers.
  • Department leaders ordered a special crowd-control unit not to use its most powerful nonlethal weapons.
  • Officers responded with defective protective equipment.
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Although the Times was able to break down its key findings, Bolton did not release the publicly, saying it was “law enforcement sensitive.”

VALIDATION … AND MORE QUESTIONS

Protesters amass at the Capitol in Washington./AP Photo

Whether the Times—which earlier was forced to retract a false story about the death of Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick—is a reliable vessel for disseminating the findings is up for debate.

Nonetheless, conservatives and pro-freedom liberal allies, such as George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, viewed it as validation of their concerns that fake news had, yet again, distorted the media narrative to comply with Democrats’ partisan agenda.

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“The finding challenges the narrative put forward in the second impeachment of former President Donald Trump,” Turley wrote in a post to his website. “It also raises questions of whether congressional leaders (who repeatedly condemned Trump for the death and injuries of officers) share responsibility for the loss of control of Congress to the rioters.”

Turley, who testified on Trump’s behalf in the House Judiciary Committee prior to his first sham impeachment, said that the findings might help explain why House Democrats rushed through the second sham impeachment with no discovery process.

“The report magnifies suspicions over why House leadership refused to hold hearings with key witnesses before the second Trump impeachment,” he wrote. “It also raises whether, after the controversial clearing of Lafayette Park in the prior summer, leaders in Congress hamstrung their own security force.”

THE ENEMY WITHIN

Muriel Bowser
Muriel Bowser / IMAGE: The View via YouTube

Amid the backdrop of months of politically charged race riots, either tacitly or explicitly supported by Democrats, and calls from the radical Left to defund or dissolve the police, a deep distrust of law-enforcement may have led leaders like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser to fear that those tasked with protecting them were the enemy.

According to the Associated Press, which also received an advance copy of the IG report, Capitol Police had been furnished with riot shields that shattered upon impact, expired weapons that couldn’t be used, inadequate training and an intelligence division that had few set standards.

Bolton found that equipment was old and stored badly; leaders had failed to act on previous recommendations to improve intelligence; and there was a broad lack of current policies or procedures for the Civil Disturbance Unit, a division that existed to ensure that legislative functions of Congress were not disrupted by civil unrest or protest activity.

In other cases, weapons weren’t used because of “orders from leadership,” the report says.

Anticipating a large, angry crowd, the Pentagon had previously offered National Guard support to officials, but only Bowser had affirmatively responded and insisted that the 340 service members she requested be unarmed.

The report quotes Army Staff Secretary Walter Piatt as telling then-Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund just before 2:30 p.m. on the afternoon of the uprising—after protesters had already breached the building—that “we don’t like the optics of the National Guard standing in a line at the Capitol.”

The Pentagon eventually approved the Guard’s presence on the day of the protest, and Guard members arrived around 5 p.m., roughly two and a half hours after Sund made his request.

MISSED AND MIXED SIGNALS

A protestor known as QShaman, aka Jake Angeli, converses with law enforcement during a Jan. 6, 2021 breach of the US Capitol. / IMAGE: Associated Press

Bolton laid out many of the missed intelligence signals, including an assessment prepared by the Department of Homeland Security in December that forwarded messages posted on forums supportive of Trump that appeared to be planning for Jan. 6.

One part of that document included a map of Capitol tunnels that someone had posted. “Take note,” the message said.

The report looks at a missed memo from the FBI in which online activists predicted a “war” on Jan. 6; Sund told Senate investigators last month he never saw it.

Bolton also details the force’s own internal reports, which he said were inconsistent. One Capitol Police report predicted that the protesters could become violent, but Sund testified before the Senate in February that internal assessments had said violence was “improbable.”

On intelligence, Bolton said, there was a lack of adequate training and guidance for dissemination within the department. There were no policies or procedures for open source data gathering—such as gathering information from the online Trump forums—and analysts “may not be aware of the proper methods of conducting open source intelligence work.”

SHROUDED IN SECRECY

@Cleavon_MD

As American Greatness recently opined, the Jan. 6 uprising carries a common thread with the prior Russia collusion hoax in that law-enforcement officials and left-wing partisans, both in Congress and in the media, seem to be conspiring to suppress key details that would be damning to the official narrative.

In addition to the mystery surrounding Sicknick’s death and those of the two officers who later committed suicide, nothing has yet been revealed about the Capitol Police officer who murdered Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt as she sought to enter the House chamber’s Speaker’s Lobby.

Moreover, hundreds of pro-Trump dissidents, some of whom were invited or welcomed into the Capitol by the police, are now being indefinitely detained while awaiting federal arraignments and trials.

As with prior inspector general reports, including one on the Russia hoax by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, Democrats already were angling to get in front of the story and put their own spin on it.

The reluctance to release the details—whether due to political sensitivities or pending investigations—undoubtedly means the Left will weaponize it to promote further disinformation, starting with Thursday’s House hearing.

House Administration Committee Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., who was one of the impeachment managers in the anti-Trump witch hunt, issued a statement in March that she had been briefed on the report, along with another internal document, and that it contained “detailed and disturbing findings and important recommendations.”

MORALE, BLAME AND REFORM

Memorial service for Brian Sicknick
Memorial service for Brian Sicknick at the US Capitol / IMAGE: Los Angeles Times

The report comes as the Capitol Police force has plunging morale. Many officers have been working extra shifts and forced overtime to protect the Capitol after the insurrection.

If used to further politicize or scapegoat the police, it could create a delicate situation in the already polarized debate.

Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman received a vote of no confidence from the union in February, reflecting widespread distrust among the rank and file with political appointees after Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, demanded the previous chiefs resign.

The entire force is also grieving the deaths of three of their own. In addition to Sicknick, officer Billy Evans was killed April 2 when he was hit by a black supremacist follower of Louis Farrakhan whose car rammed into a barricade outside the Senate.

A third officer, Howard Liebengood, died by suicide in the days after the Jan. 6 insurrection. While Democrats tried to lump the loss of Liebengood and the suicide of a DC metro police officer, Jeffrey Smith, among the Jan. 6 casualties, no formal connection has been revealed linking the protest to their motives.

It is unclear whether the report offered any proposed reforms for how the force might avoid being thrust into further partisan wranglings or what, if any, recommendations were made for solving the morale problem.

Headline USA reached out to the Capitol Police IG’s office and will update with any response.

Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press

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