Impeachment Managers Show Chilling Unreleased Video From Capitol Riots

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Publish Date : 2021-02-11 14:40:40
Impeachment Managers Show Chilling Unreleased Video From Capitol Riots

By Lisa Hagen, Reporter Feb. 10, 2021, at 7:30 p.m.

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U.S. News & World Report

Dems Show Chilling Riot Videos at Trump Trial

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The Associated Press

Rioters fill a hall in the U.S. Capitol in an image from a security video shown to senators by House impeachment manager Rep. Eric Swalwell during the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump on Wednesday.THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

HOUSE IMPEACHMENT managers played previously unreleased graphic footage and audio from the Capitol on Jan. 6, seeking to paint a clearer picture of how rioters aggressively and violently breached the building and showing just how close they got to lawmakers before their evacuations.

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On the second day of former President Donald Trump's impeachment trial, the managers walked through the lead-up to the riots and what they say were provocations by the ex-president to go to the Capitol and stop the certification of President Joe Biden's win. But in the second half of Wednesday's presentation, managers provided a minute-by-minute account of the riots that gave new and illuminating information about how the day unfolded.

The intense videos – some new and others previously seen – featured hand-to-hand fighting between rioters and authorities at points around the Capitol and included footage of the fatal shooting of a rioter as she attempted to breach an inner hallway through a broken window.

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Managers played a series of never-before-seen clips from security cameras installed around the Capitol as well as footage from the body camera of a police officer who was trying to prevent the mob from entering the building. The video included rioters violently breaking windows and doors and crawling through them to get inside the ornately decorated halls of the People's House. It showed disturbing attacks against police officers securing the building and the search for politicians like then-Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California as well as the taunts and death threats the rioters spewed at them as they searched.

As they stormed the building, other footage showed the evacuations that happened just minutes before rioters crossed paths with lawmakers. One video showed Pence and his family leaving the Senate chamber and walking down the stairs to safety as U.S. Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman sought to distract a mob from the chamber and steer them away.

The managers also chose to play videos that depicted the first-hand experiences of senators, who are sitting as both jurists and witnesses to the events of Jan. 6. Dozens of senators were fleeing the chamber and running down hallways as officers ran in the opposite direction toward the mobs.

In one clip, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York is seen walking down a ramp with several people and then goes out of view. But a few seconds later, the camera captures the group running back through glass doors which are then blocked by two officers.

Outside the Senate chamber, video shows Goodman alerting GOP Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah to turn around as he sprints toward a crisis point.

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"Obviously, it's very troubling to see the great violence that our Capitol Police and others are subjected to. … That was overwhelmingly distressing and emotional," Romney told reporters at the Capitol after watching the tranche of new footage. He said he didn't realize Goodman was the one who redirected him.

Delegate Stacey Plaskett, who represents the U.S. Virgin Islands as a non-voting member, and Rep. Eric Swalwell of California walked senators through the security camera footage since it did not include audio.

Plaskett described the scene after one of the breaches, noting that some rioters were wearing full tactical gear and holding zip ties while others carried riot shields. She also pointed out that some people who were part of that group belonged to the far-right, male chauvinist extremist group the Proud Boys.

She also revealed that Pelosi was completely evacuated from the Capitol complex and brought to a secure, off-site location. Meanwhile, video from the security cameras captured Pelosi staffers barricading themselves in an inner room of the office just seven minutes before a rioter breached the first door and then moved on after seeing a second door – the one protecting the staffers from the mob.

In addition to the video footage, managers also accessed audio from the radios of Metropolitan Police Department officers as they called for reinforcements to tamp down the crowds and how rioters used metal poles against them.

"We need some reinforcements up here now," according to the audio from officers. "They're starting to pull the gates down. They're pulling metal poles at us.

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