The potential for violence during the certification of Joe Biden on January 06 is the subject of a new report. The Capitol Police Inspector general, Michael Bolton, released a scathing report criticizing his agency, saying that leaders received warnings that Trump supporters were a threat to civilians and law enforcement, but we’re not equipped to handle the violent extremists.
The inspector general’s report – over one hundred pages – criticizes how the Capitol Police prepared and responded to the Capitol Hill mob on that day in early January.
Three days before the event, Capitol Police intelligence had warned of the potential for violence from Trump supporters, many of whom believed his insane claims and conspiracies of a stolen election from the greatest president ever known. Some of these supporters are alleged to have posted a map of the Capitol’s tunnel system on pro-Trump websites.
“Unlike previous post-election protests, the targets of the pro-Trump supporters are not necessarily the counter-protesters, as they were previously, but rather Congress itself is the target on the 6th,” the threat assessment read according to the inspector’s report. “Stop the Steal’s propensity to attract white supremacists, militia members, and others who actively promote violence may lead to a significantly dangerous situation to law enforcement and the public alike.”
According to the report, the agency received warning about how Trump’s extremist supporters “were growing increasingly desperate” as he promoted lies about election fraud.
“Supporters of the current president see January 06, 2021 as the last opportunity to overturn the results of the presidential election. This sense of desperation, and disappointment may lead to more of an incentive to become violent.”
On December 21, the DHS warned CP of comments found on a pro-Trump website promoting attacks against Congressional members, including a map of the Capitol’s tunnel system. Among the comments included, “Bring guns. It’s now or never.” “We can’t give them a choice. Overwhelming armed numbers are our only chance.”
According to the New York Times, other social media comments included, “Be read to fight. Congress needs to hear breaking glass, doors being kicked in, and blood from their BLM and Pantifa slave soldiers being spilled. Get violent, stop calling this a march, or a rally, or a protest. Go there ready for war. We get our president or we die. Nothing else will achieve this goal.”
“None of the intelligence we received predicted what actually occured,” the former Capitol Police chief, Steven Sund testified in February before the Senate. “These criminals came prepared for war.”
Sources: The Week, New York Times.