Where were the United States Capitol Police when protesters stormed the Capitol on January 6?

Some United States Capitol Police (USCP) officers were teleworking, some riot gear was locked on a bus or broken on impact after being improperly stowed away, and only a few hundred of the 1,879 officers sworn in were inside the Capitol, despite reports showing the protests could heat up on Jan.6e, 2021.

Even with a budget of $ 464 million per year and nearly 2,000 officers, the USCP was unable to prevent a breach of Capitol Hill by protesters who carried no weapons. USCP’s budget is larger than that of many major metropolitan cities, including Detroit, Minneapolis, St. Louis, and Columbus, Ohio.

Today, Congress plans to give USCP – which has admitted a lack of preparation, training, communications and equipment – about an additional $ 150 million, bringing its budget to over $ 600 million for fiscal year 2022.

Some of that money will no doubt go to the USCP’s Diversity Office, which was of little use on January 6.e but has nevertheless increased in staff and budget since 2016.

Showing up is half the battle

Despite the employment of 1,879 sworn-in officers in September 2020, a congressional investigation forced the USCP to admit that on January 6e, only 195 officers were deployed to positions inside or outside the United States Capitol, and another 276 were assigned to the department’s seven civil unrest unit platoons.

USCP documents show that at 2 pm that day, only 1,214 officers were “on site” at the Capitol building complex. Congressional investigators, however, concluded that the USCP could only count 417 officers and could not explain the whereabouts of the remaining 797 officers.

Only 1,457 of its 1,879 sworn officers were never “on site” for the entire 24-hour period of January 6. That leaves 422 officers who were never even on site – 23% or nearly one in four.

Some agents did not show up because they were “teleworking”. The USCP inspector told Congress that 43 sworn officers were “in alternative facilities / travel” and “telecommuting.” (See footnote 358.)

In response to our request for comment, the Capitol Police spokesperson provided this context:

“The ministry has off-site locations, which must also continue to operate. Fewer than 50 sworn employees were working off-site on Jan.6. Many sworn employees who did not work on January 6 were unavailable due to injuries, COVID-19, or time off such as family medical leave or military leave. While the department limited time off for this event, it did not revoke time off for sworn employees who submitted approved time off requests months before January 6. “

The United States Capitol complex consists of approximately 20 buildings spread over approximately two square miles, including the office buildings of the House of Representatives and Senate, the Library of Congress, and the United States Supreme Court, as well as various parks and the American Botanical Garden.

The USCP, in 2018, screened 11.2 million people at building entrances and indoor checkpoints, according to USCP Congress testimony.

As the only federal law enforcement agency with jurisdiction over the Capitol Complex, the USCP is the first and last line of defense protecting members of Congress, their staff, and visitors to the nation’s Capitol buildings.

Riot shields shattered on impact, some locked in a bus, officers not dressed for success

According to a bipartisan and bicameral congressional report, the USCP did not allow officers of its special tactical units to wear protective equipment at the start of their shift, but[d]”There in various places.

At least once, “USCP protective shields were locked onto a bus during the riot so that a CDU platoon could not gain access and, as a result, the platoon had to respond to the riot. crowd without the protection of its riot shields. . “

But even officers who had riot shields ran into problems. USCP officers allegedly “received faulty riot shields which had been improperly stored and, as a result,” broke[ed] upon impact.

Office Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Action (IDEA) not very useful on January 6

Our OpenTheBooks.com auditors examined the little available on Capitol Police spending and discovered the USCP office “Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Action (IDEA) not previously reported”.

In 2016, USCP hired Natalie Holder to be its “head of diversity” and lead the USCP’s IDEA office, an office she said she founded. Her salary is not public, although she bragged on her publicly accessible LinkedIn page that she expanded the office to five people and “increased the budget by 70%.[.]”

Interestingly, Holder has made his anti-Trump prejudices public. On Twitter and Instagram, Holder admitted showing up late for work to walk an extra eight minutes to an unsold Starbucks at the Trump International Hotel. “#LateToWorkButOnTheRightSideOfHistory,” she posted, alongside a photo of the hotel.

Just over five months before the security breach at the U.S. Capitol, USCP chief Steven Sund testified before Congress about the department’s diversity training:

“We have also strengthened our relationships with Asian, African-American, Latin, LGBTQIA and women-focused professional associations in law enforcement through our participation in conferences, meetings and events. recruitment events. ”

Weeks before his resignation following the massive Capitol Hill security breach, Chief Sund released his strategic human capital plan for USCP employees for 2021-2025, which listed the second highest goal. for USCP employees as “diversity,” “inclusion” and “equity.”

“Does anyone have a plan? The leadership of the USCP was AWOL on January 6

Congressional investigators reported:

Although the incident commanders were overwhelmed, the USCP leadership never took control of the radio to communicate with the officers who responded. The officers did not remember hearing [Chief] Mr Sund on the radio at any point during the attack and recalled hearing Ms Pittman only once, when she ordered the Capitol to be locked down at 2:00 p.m.

… Neither Mr. Sund nor Ms. Pittman explained why the USCP leadership did not communicate directly with the officers. One officer attributed the failure to a lack of operational experience among USCP leadership and suggested that the USCP promotion process should be reassessed. In the absence of communication, officers lacked clarity as to whether to answer calls for “all available units”. One officer reported hearing a lieutenant ask repeatedly over the radio:[d]Does anyone have a plan? “

Congress allocates $ 150 million budget increase

The Senate Appropriations Committee announced, although not yet passed, an annual appropriation bill for USCP that would increase its previous budget by $ 91 million and allow USCP to hire. up to 212 additional sworn-in officers, increasing the force to over 2,100 officers and adding another 44 “mission critical civilian support personnel”.

The bill also offers officers “overtime and retention benefits, such as tuition credits and wellness and trauma support.” The bill also provides for significant investments in the lifecycle replacement of necessary security, security and communications equipment, as well as in intelligence analysis and investigations, and improvement of the equipment of the ‘Unity of civil disruption, and increased dignitary protection travel and intelligence analysis’ (emphasis added).

Capitol Hill Police are not subject to open case laws

It is difficult to hold the USCP to account.

Our OpenTheBooks.com auditors filed a FOIA claim for Capitol Police salaries and expenses. On September 24, 2021, we were notified that the Capitol Police are exempt under federal FOIA laws and that their salaries and expenses are protected from public disclosure.

Senior counsel for the USCP wrote that the USCP, “as an entity of the legislative branch, is not an ‘agency’ as defined … under the Freedom of Information Act.” The attorney also claimed that even if it fell under the FOIA, information requested by our auditors would be exempt, leaving taxpayers in the dark about USCP spending.

Further reading:

Review of the U.S. Capitol Attack: A Review of Security, Planning, and Response Failures on January 6

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion of the United States Capitol Police website

Testimony of Steven A. Sund, Chief of Police United States Capitol Police, before the House Administration Committee United States House of Representatives, July 16, 2019

January 6e Capitol Riot had at least two on-board FBI informants

“Capitol Security Review Recommends Drastic Changes After Riot”

$ 18.2 million from the Congressional Slush Fund for #MeToo claims (includes three USCP-related payments in 2019). Since 1997, the Office of Congressional Workplace Rights has paid $ 18.2 million to settle 291 workplace dispute cases for Congress, the Capitol Police, the Capitol Architect, and the Library of Congress.

Democratic mayors funded their police, while spending millions on their own police protection

“Democratic mayors funded their police, while spending millions on their own police protection,” Forbes, July 20, 2021

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