A new investigation by the Associated Press showed that as Capitol Police were overrun by a violent pro-Trump mob at the Capitol on January 6, only two medics were on site to help and treat injured officers.
AP combed through materials received through 35 Freedom of Information Act requests made to law enforcement agencies in charge of securing the Capitol during and prior to the insurrection. The documents shed light on the disjointed nature of the security response on the sixth.
One of those documents was a memo from the only two medics tasked to help Capitol police officers in case things escalated.
The AP reviewed the memo written after the insurrection by the two medics, Arlington county firefighters Taylor Blunt and Nathan Waterfall, where they recounted the scene and how they and Capitol officers were overwhelmed.
“We were among the first mutual aid teams to arrive and were critical to begin the process of driving protestors off the Capitol,” Blunt wrote in the memo.
He added that Police officers were “being pulled into the crowd and trampled, assaulted with scaffolding materials, and/or bear maced by protesters.”
In the documents obtained by the AP, Blunt said that alongside injured officers, rioters also sought medical assistance and that some members of the mob “feigned illness to remain behind police lines.”
During the storming of the Capitol, five people died, including one police officer, and two police officers died by suicide in the days after the attack.
More than 300 people have been charged in connection to the January 6 riot, with many facing federal and local charges. Insider created a searchable database of every riot suspect who has been charged.
According to the documents reviewed by AP, the two Arlington firefighters were dispatched as medics after Washington Metro Police Chief Robert J. Contee requested help from Arlington County, Maryland, and Arlington County, Virginia, police departments.
Andy Penn, Arlington’s acting police chief, said that their department would send backups for the “planned and unplanned first amendment activities.”
The AP reviewed email exchanges between Federal Protective Service officers, who are in charge of securing federal property, on the day of the insurrection and Trump’s rally.
As Trump’s rally was concluding, a protective service officer whose identifying information was redacted sent an email saying, “POTUS is encouraging the protesters to march to capitol grounds and continue protesting there.”
Another colleague had noted that by noon, hours before the breach, at least 300 Proud Boys had gathered in front of the Capitol.
The report made clear that alongside the Capitol Police’s security assessment about militia members and white supremacists, federal agencies also prepped for violence at the Capitol.