On January 6, Capitol Police fired flash grenades and rubber bullets at peaceful protesters who were BEHIND the barriers. They were not on the Capitol steps; they were not menacing anyone with weapons. There were children, veterans and seniors in the tightly packed crowd. Flash bang grenades in close range can cause hearing loss, eye damage, and other injuries.
The FBI and Capitol Police have 14,000 of surveillance and body cam footage that they are refusing to release. Covering up the fact that police officers, including federal USCP officers, incited violence on January 6 is very likely a key reason why the government refuses to release security and body cam footage.
Emerging evidence suggests police intentionally agitated protesters to provoke bad behavior, including verbal and physical attacks on law enforcement. And now they’re using cherry picked clips of their video stash that show only the angry responses protesters had to being attacked to keep protesters incarcerated indefinitely.
In a June 17 court filing asking for his client’s release, a protester’s attorney described part of the body cam footage that wasn’t released:
“For the ten minutes prior to encountering the defendant, Officer N.R. can be seen reaching over the metal barrier and pushing a female protester holding a flag to the ground on two separate occasions. The protesters . . . were by and large peaceful. It was only after tear gas and pepper spray were deployed by police upon this group of peaceful protesters that the crowds changed.
“Officer N.R. [the cop Webster allegedly assaulted] was equipped with a helmet, a shield, a gas mask, and a full complement of body armor. [P]rotesters—who did not attend the protest with a mask or face shield—are observed suffering the effects of being gassed and pepper sprayed by police. Officer N.R. can also be observed mocking several protesters who were complaining about this Officer’s excessive use of force.
“Angered by the use of police force . . . Webster is heard angrily referring to the police officers as ‘commie motherfuckers.’ The video depicts this officer reaching beyond the metal barriers and pushing Webster on the chest. It is at this point that Officer N.R. again reaches over the metal barricade and punches Webster on the left side of his face.”