Acting U.S. Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman said on Wednesday the agency took action ahead of the Jan.6 riot based on intelligence that extremists were planning to attend the previous rally and planned to be armed, but that intelligence had failed to predict the scope of the attack, which would eventually overwhelm officers when the Capitol was breached.
Had there been better information about the coordinated attack, Pittman suggested, the U.S. Secret Service may not have brought then Vice President Mike Pence – an insurgent target – to Capitol Hill to overseeing the certification of the November elections that day, according to his testimony was made public ahead of today’s House Appropriations Committee hearing.
The department’s preparations were based on information it gathered from its law enforcement partners like the FBI and other members of the intelligence community, none of which indicated an insurgency Mass of this magnitude would occur on the United States Capitol on Jan. 6, “Pittman said in his prepared written testimony.
“Information received from the FBI or any other law enforcement partner also did not include a specific credible threat that thousands of US citizens would attack the US Capitol,” she added. “Indeed, the United States Secret Service brought the Vice President to Capitol Hill for electoral certification that day because they were also unaware of a specific credible threat of this magnitude.”
Pittman said in his written testimony that the department’s Interagency Intelligence and Coordination Division produced up to four intelligence assessments leading up to the January 6 riot, with the final assessment showing that militia members, supremacists Whites and other extremist groups are said to be participating in the rally and expected to be armed.
The final assessment, Pittman wrote, prompted the Capitol Police to send dignity protection officers to the homes of some congressional leaders, to deploy other officers from that unit to the Ellipse to protect members of the Congress and to post evacuation vehicles for Congress leaders on the day of the rally. .
But Pittman says intelligence did not predict the scale of the attack that would take place on Jan.6, with thousands of rioters outnumbering the Capitol police and violating the Capitol. Intelligence told them to prepare for a protest, Pittman intends to say – but never indicated a coordinated attack.
Another senior law enforcement official will tell House lawmakers on Thursday that problematic intelligence and a breakdown in information sharing between law enforcement officials contributed to January’s security failures. 6 when the U.S. Capitol was overrun by a violent pro-Trump mob.
Acting Sergeant-at-Arms Timothy Blodgett will say in his prepared remarks that pre-Jan.6 intelligence was a problem, citing a Jan. 3 U.S. Capitol Police bulletin as an example of conflicting information provided to the forces of order before the attack.
Blodgett will say that this USCP bulletin contained warnings that the January 6 protests could turn violent and would be different from previous MAGA marches. But he also plans to say that the bulletin maintained that Jan. 6 was to be similar to previous MAGA marches and he believes the assessment was used to inform the day’s security preparations.
Learn more about their testimonials here.