Washington (Associated Press)-US officials said on Tuesday that the FBI warned law enforcement agencies of possible extremism-driven violence before violating the U.S. Capitol last week. This contradicted an earlier statement that they were accused by militants. Supporters beware of President Donald Trump.
Nearly a week after the riots, officials said they were combing through a large amount of evidence and vowed to actively look for those who carried out brutal attacks on the US Congress. Although most of the charges filed so far have been misdemeanors, acting U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin said that the Department of Justice is considering sedition against certain mobs, in fact accusing them of attempting to overthrow or defeat government.
“This is just the beginning,”
The Ministry of Justice has set up a special strike force to review the possibility of sedition, which may be sentenced to 20 years in prison. Officials said that some of the techniques they used in riot investigations were the same as those used in international counter-terrorism investigations, with the purpose of checking the flow of funds that led to violations and the flow of defendants. New York Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called for the rioters to be added to a “no-fly list,” which is most often related to terrorism investigations.
The statement issued by FBI and Justice Department officials on Tuesday was both to defend federal law enforcement preparations prior to the deadly riot and to warn participants. However, they also raised the inter-agency riots on January 6, which was a new issue of coordination by Trump’s phone calls that triggered his supporters to seek Congress to confirm the victory of President-elect Biden.
After the riots, some law enforcement officials, including the Chief of Police of the Congress, stated that they were not aware of their serious concerns until January 6, and only prepared for freedom of speech protests.
But on Tuesday, the “Washington Post” reported the existence of a January 5 report from the FBI’s field office in Norfolk, Virginia, which detailed predictions of the extremists launching a “war” in Washington the next day. Possibility. Steven D’Antuono, Assistant to the Director of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, said that once he receives a warning on January 5, he will quickly communicate with other law enforcement agencies through the Joint Terrorism Task Force. Share this information.
D’Antuono, one of the officials who hinted that law enforcement was just caught off guard, said on Friday: “There is no indication that there is nothing else but First Amendment protection activities.”
He did not explain the discrepancy in the statement, although he suggested on Tuesday that Norfolk warned a personal investigation based on non-specific information, describing it as a “clue on a message board” rather than any specific person.
In a statement issued on Tuesday night, the FBI said that the author of the report warned that “the FBI may violate the right to freedom of speech when taking further action” and that the document itself does not necessarily link the comments to national security threats or crimes. connect together. It emphasized D’Antuono’s remarks at a press conference, implying that without knowing the identity of the person quoted in the report, it is impossible to do much with this information.
The US Congress police and other officials did not immediately respond to questions about their preliminary assessment of the threat.
A US defense official familiar with the discussion said Tuesday that Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy had not been informed of the FBI’s warning.
The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations, said that it is unclear whether the Department of Defense or military officials have heard of the FBI’s notice, but all the leaders’ speeches in recent days have shown that they do not know the expected Capitol. This level of violence will happen.
Department of Defense and National Guard officials, including McCarthy, said in interviews in the past few days that Washington, DC told them that they thought the protests were similar to the protests on November 14 and December 12. They said that federal law enforcement officials stated that there was activity on Twitter, but they did not expect the level of violence they eventually saw last Wednesday.
Even without intelligence from law enforcement, there are enough warnings to warn of pro-Trump demonstrations in Washington. However, according to several people who heard the response from law enforcement agencies, the Capitol Police did not increase the staffing and did not prepare for the possibility of the planned protests escalating into large-scale violent disturbances. Three days before the riots, officials rejected the Pentagon’s help.
When they finally requested support, the troops mobilized for more than two hours near the Capitol. By then, the mob had been raging inside for more than four hours.
After the mob began to move on the Capitol, a police officer ordered that lethal force not be used, which explains why the police officers outside the building did not pull their weapons when the crowd was closed. Sometimes police officers are ordered to load weapons in. If superiors think that this might cause a stampede or gun battle, please avoid escalation.
In this case, this also makes the officer’s ability to resist the mob very small. In a video at the scene, a police officer raised his fist trying to push the crowd back, pinning him and his colleagues to the door. The crowd laughed: “You are not American!” A man tried to stab him with the spike of an American flag.
The rampage in the congressional halls caused both legislators and Trump’s own vice president to hide, as the crowd called on Mike Pence to lynch him to monitor his vote count. The scene also undermines the symbol of the Republic-the peaceful transition of power. At least five people died, including a congressional policeman.
Associated Press writer Lolita C. Baldor contributed to this report in Washington.