Posts tagged with "Metropolitan Police Department"

Pelosi says lawmakers will get security briefing on ‘Justice for J6’ rally

September 9, 2021

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) said on Wednesday, September 8,  that lawmakers will be briefed in the coming days about security plans for the Capitol during a rally later this month in support of people charged with crimes related to the January 6 insurrection—and maintained that “we intend to have the integrity of the Capitol be intact,” reports The Hill.

Pelosi said that “there are some briefings going on at the appropriate level” with the House Administration Committee, which will be followed by additional ones for other members of Congress ahead of the September 18 “Justice for J6” rally, when people demonstrating against those arrested for invading the Capitol are set to gather.

When asked if there are plans to reinstall a fence around the Capitol complex, which came down this spring, Pelosi told the press pool: “Not necessarily.”

“What happened on January 6 was such an assault on this beautiful Capitol,” Pelosi told reporters in the Capitol. “And now these people are coming back to praise the people who were out to kill. Out to kill members of Congress, successfully causing the deaths—successfully is not the word, but that’s the word, because it’s what they set out to do—of our law enforcement.”

Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick died a day after engaging with the violent mob of former President Donald Trump‘s supporters, while four other police officers from the Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department died of suicide in the weeks after the attack. More than 140 police officers between the two departments were injured.

The Hill reported on Tuesday that the Capitol Police are planning to present a security plan this week to the Capitol Police Board, which oversees its activities. The Metropolitan Police Department is also planning an “increased presence around the city,” according to a spokesperson.

The September 18 rally in support of the more than 570 people charged with crimes related to the attack on the Capitol is being organized by a group called Look Ahead America, which is led by a former Trump campaign official. The event is not expected to draw as many people as the rally on January 6, but some members of the same right-wing extremist groups that were at the Capitol on the day of the insurrection also may be in attendance on September 18.

Matt Braynard, the executive director of the group organizing the September 18 rally, has urged attendees to “be respectful and kind to all law enforcement officers” and advised only bringing signs or clothing focused on “demanding justice for these political prisoners.”

Neither chamber of Congress is scheduled to be in session on September18, which falls on a Saturday. The House isn’t expected to return from its summer recess until two days later.

Research contact: @thehill

Ex-FBI official says law enforcement needs to take Sept. 18 right-wing rally in DC ‘very seriously’

September 8, 2021

Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe said on Monday evening, September 6,  that law enforcement needs to take the upcoming right-wing rally in support of jailed January 6 rioters “very seriously” as concerns mount about more potential violence on Capitol Hill, CNN reports.

“I think they should take it very seriously. In fact, they should take it more seriously than they took the same sort of intelligence that they likely saw on January 5,” McCabe, now a CNN contributor, told CNN’s Poppy Harlow on “Erin Burnett OutFront.”

Law enforcement members in Washington are steeling themselves against possible unrest at the “Justice for J6″ rally—planned for September 18—which aims to support the insurrectionists charged in the riot.

The event, organized by a former Trump campaign staffer, has prompted security concerns on Capitol Hill, and some precautionary measures will be in place. However, it’s unclear how many protesters plan to attend. The rally is also taking place on a Saturday, when the House will be on recess, so far fewer lawmakers or staff will be around.

A law enforcement source previously told CNN that the Metropolitan Police Department will be fully activated, which includes canceling days off for sworn officers and putting Civil Disturbance Units on standby. The source said the department will monitor open source information—like online chatter and travel —to gauge the potential crowds.

Homeland Security Intelligence Chief John Cohen told CNN last month that online extremist rhetoric is strikingly similar to the buildup to the January 6 attack, with increasing calls for violence linked to conspiracy theories and false narratives.

The security preparations for September 18 underscore the tense environment on Capitol Hill following the January 6 attack. In August, a man critical of Democrats was arrested after an hours-long standoff near the Capitol during which he claimed to have an explosive device; the event ended without incident but still sent a chill through Capitol Hill and provided law enforcement with yet another example of the risks of a toxic political climate. In April, a Capitol Police officer was killed after a man rammed a vehicle into a police barricade.

The charged environment has led lawmakers to invest in body armor and security systems, while the U.S. Capitol Police is opening field offices in cities around the country.

Still, McCabe—who served as the FBI’s deputy director from 2016 to 2018, including a period as acting director—said Monday that law enforcement has “a few factors leaning in their favor” this time. “You don’t have a sitting President actively fanning the flames and trying to get people to attend the rally,” he said.

McCabe continued: “And on the other hand, it looks like, from all indications, our law enforcement partners are well prepared for this one. They seem to be taking the intelligence very seriously, which raises a question as to whether or not they did on January 6, but that’s another issue.”

Research contact: @CNN

Capitol Police investigate bomb threat near Library of Congress

August 20, 2021

After a standoff of nearly four hours, the United States Capitol Police continued negotiating at 1 p.m. on Thursday, August 19, with a man who claimed to have a bomb in a black pickup truck he had parked outside the Library of Congress—prompting evacuations from government buildings in the area, The New York Times reports.

The man drove the black pickup onto the sidewalk of the Library of Congress at about 9:15 a.m. on Thursday, and the police responded to a disturbance call, Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Capitol Police said in a news conference.

When the police arrived, the man said he had a bomb and one of the officers observed what appeared to be a detonator in his hand, Chief Manger said.

The police are negotiating with the man, he said. It was unclear whether the man actually did have explosives.

“We don’t know what his motives are at this time,” Chief Manger said. He confirmed that some of those negotiations had been streamed live on social media, and said the police have “a possible name” for the person.

“We’re trying to get as much information as we can to try to find a way to peacefully resolve this,” he said. Chief Manger declined to describe the conversation between the man and the negotiators.

The man, whom officials identified as a North Carolina resident, was making anti-government statements, according to a law enforcement official.

In alerts to Capitol Hill staff members earlier Thursday, the police urged some people to move inside offices, lock doors, and stay away from windows; and told others to evacuate to designated assembly areas.

The Metropolitan Police Department was “assisting with the report of an active bomb threat involving a suspicious vehicle,” and “currently evacuating the area,” according to a spokesperson, Alaina Gertz.

The Capitol Police declined to provide details about the investigation and referred questions to the agency’s Twitter account, which urged people to stay away from the area.

With lawmakers scattered across the country for a scheduled August recess, most congressional staff were not on Capitol Hill when much of the complex went into lockdown. Many of the evacuated employees work for the Architect of the Capitol staff, building employees and workers helping with construction. And while thousands of people typically work in each office building, the pandemic has limited how many people were inside.

The Supreme Court building was evacuated shortly after 10 a.m., said Patricia McCabe, a spokesperson.

As the police investigated, they shut down several nearby streets around the 100 block of First Street SE. Technicians from the F.B.I. and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives joined the officers at the scene.

Just before 11 a.m., dozens of people flooded out of the Madison building, having been told by officers inside to leave the building.

“Everybody head south now,” a Capitol Police officer said as other officers ushered construction workers away from work in the road and asked diners outside a cafe to leave their tables.

Ultimately much of the crowd, some carrying laptops and tangled handfuls of charging cords and headphones, ended up in a park near the building, calling family members and figuring out how to get home.

The threat unsettled visitors and employees at the Capitol, eight months after a mob of Trump supporters stormed the Hill on January 6, in a violent attempt to prevent Congress from certifying the results of the presidential election.

Research contact: @nytimes

Editor’s note: Shortly aftern 2 p.m., the suspect peacefully surrendered. “As far as we can tell it was just his decision to surrender,” said Chief Manger, who identified the man as Floyd Roy Roseberry and said it appeared that he acted alone. He now faces federal charges. Authorities are examining the so-called bomb to determine whether it is an explosive device.