When rioters stormed the US Capitol on January 6, the attack was well-documented. Many of the insurrectionists live-streamed it or posted photos on social media. The Capitol itself was full of journalists, who reported what happened. And numerous charging documents in the weeks since the insurrection have exposed even more.
Rioters Were So Close To The Vice-President
Impeachment manager Stacey Plaskett used a model of the Capitol and security camera video previously unseen by the public to show just how close the insurrectionists came to then-Vice President Mike Pence.
“They were within 100 feet of where the vice president was sheltering with his family,” Plaskett told senators. “And they were just a feet [sic] away from one of the doors to [the Senate] chamber, where many of you remained at that time.”
The video showed US Capitol Police officer Eugene Goodman leading a group of rioters away from an entrance to the Senate chamber around 2:15pm local time as Pence and his family sought shelter in a room nearby. Pence wasn’t evacuated to a secure location until 2:26pm, Plaskett said.
In the impeachment managers’ model below, the orange dot represents Pence, the blue represents Goodman, and the red represents the rioters.
Trump Knew Pence Was In Danger When He Attacked His VP On Twitter
Newly elected senator Tommy Tuberville, one of Trump’s closest allies in the Senate, appeared to inadvertently confirm on Wednesday that Trump knew Pence was in danger at the Capitol when he denounced his vice president on Twitter.
As the second day of trial wrapped, Tuberville told reporters that Trump had called for his help in delaying the electoral vote certification even as the riot raged. The senator said he explained to the then-president that he didn’t have time to talk at the moment.
“He didn’t get a chance to say a whole lot because I said, ‘Mr. President, they just took the vice president out. I’ve got to go,’” Tuberville said.
Pence’s security team removed him from the Senate chamber at 2:14pm. As Plaskett noted, he and his family hid in a nearby room until 2:26pm when he was evacuated to a secure location.
This means Trump knew Pence’s safety was at risk when he tweeted at 2:24pm: “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution … USA demands the truth!”
Meanwhile, insurrectionists at the Capitol were chanting “Hang Mike Pence!” and calling him a “traitor” for refusing to try to overturn the election results as Trump had pressured him to do.
Top Politicians Ran From The Mob
The security video included harrowing, never-before-seen images of congressional members and staff fleeing the mob.
Senator Chuck Schumer, the then-incoming Senate majority leader, can be seen walking down a hallway with some of his aides before quickly turning around and running in the opposite direction to escape the rioters.
In another shot, Officer Goodman directs senator Mitt Romney, one of Trump’s most prominent Republican critics, away from the violence. Romney can then be seen running after Goodman.
Police Recording Reveals Front-Line Terror
Newly released police dispatch recordings captured law enforcement’s desperate pleas for backup as they worked to protect the Capitol despite being massively outnumbered by the rioters.
“They’re starting to dismantle the reviewing stand,” an officer says. “They’re throwing metal poles at us.”
Moments later, a panicked voice shouts out to dispatch: “Cruiser 50, give me DSO [Domestic Security Operations] up here now! DSO! Multiple law enforcement injuries! DSO, get up here!”
Five people died that day, including one police officer. Two other officers who responded to the riot died by suicide in the days that followed.
Roughly 140 officers were wounded in the attack, the Capitol Police officers’ union said last month. Their injuries included head wounds, cracked ribs and smashed spinal discs. One officer had a heart attack. Another was gouged in the eye with a flagpole.