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4 dead as Trump supporters stormed Capitol

The Latest on Congress’ tally of the Electoral College vote won by Joe Biden

Posted: Jan 6, 2021 11:23 AM
Updated: Jan 6, 2021 10:45 PM

 

Pro-Trump protesters have stormed the US Capitol on Jan. 6 as members of Congress were meeting to certify the Electoral College results of the 2020 presidential election.

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(UPDATE: 8:13 p.m.) - Four people died as supporters of President Donald Trump violently occupied the U.S. Capitol.

Washington, D.C., Police Chief Robert Contee said the dead on Wednesday included a woman who was shot by the U.S. Capitol Police, as well as three others who died in “medical emergencies.”

Police said both law enforcement and Trump supporters deployed chemical irritants during the hourslong occupation of the Capitol building before it was cleared Wednesday evening by law enforcement.

The woman was shot earlier Wednesday as the mob tried to break through a barricaded door in the Capitol where police were armed on the other side. She was hospitalized with a gunshot wound and later died.

D.C. police officials also say two pipe bombs were recovered, one outside the Democratic National Committee and one outside the Republican National Committee. Police found a cooler from a vehicle that had a long gun and Molotov cocktail on Capitol grounds.

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(UPDATE: 2:52 p.m.) - One person has died after being shot by law enforcement at the Capitol, sources told NBC News.

At least one explosive device was found on the Capitol grounds, officials told NBC News. At least five people were taken to the hospital, NBC News reports.

Officials have declared the U.S. Capitol complex “secure” after heavily armed police moved to end a nearly four-hour violent occupation by supporters of President Donald Trump, according to The Associated Press.

An announcement saying “the Capitol is secure” rang out Wednesday evening inside a secure location for officials of the House. Lawmakers applauded.

The occupation interrupted Congress’ Electoral College count that will formalize President-elect Joe Biden’s upcoming inauguration on Jan. 20.

Lawmakers were evacuated to secure locations around the Capitol complex and Washington, D.C. after thousands of Trump supporters breached the building and skirmished with police officers.

Lawmakers have signaled that they would resume the constitutionally mandated count as soon as it was safe to do so.

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As protestors breach the U.S. Capitol, delaying confirmation by the House and the Senate of the results of the Nov. 3 presidential election – injuring multiple police officers and threatening the safety of our elected leaders in the process – the Peace Officers Research Association of California (PORAC) announced it is condemning the violence as an affront to our democracy and calling for a return to civility in the expression of political opinions. They shared the following statement below:

“Today’s violent breach of the U.S. Capitol Building is reprehensible and belies the values and traditions upon which this country was built,” said Brian Marvel, President of the Peace Officers Research Association of California. “Respect for the rule of law and those sworn to uphold it are at the foundation of our democracy. We stand in solidarity with the men and women in law enforcement who are on the front lines of defending and upholding the law of the land. Regardless of where we stand politically, we are all Americans, and must return immediately to the civil discourse that is the heart of our great American experiment.”

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(UPDATE: 2:31 p.m.) - The Washington, D.C., police chief says at least five weapons have been recovered and at least 13 people have been arrested so far in pro-Trump protests.

The mostly maskless crowd stormed the Capitol earlier Wednesday as lawmakers were meeting to certify President-elect Joe Biden’s win. One person was shot; their condition is unknown.

Police Chief Robert Contee called the attack a riot.

As darkness began to set in, law enforcement officials were working their way toward the protesters, using percussion grenades to try to clear the area around the Capitol. Big clouds of tear gas were visible.

Police were in full riot gear. They moved down the West steps, clashing with demonstrators.

Mayor Muriel Bowser earlier declared a 6 p.m. curfew.

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(UPDATE: 1:40 p.m.) - President Donald Trump told supporters to 'go home' but continued his election attacks on a recorded video message. According to the Associated Press, the President said his backers are "very special."

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(UPDATE: 12:53 p.m.) - The White House says National Guard troops along with other federal protective services are en route to the Capitol to help end a violent occupation by President Donald Trump’s supporters who are seeking to prevent the certification of the 2020 presidential election.

Press secretary Kayleigh McEnany tweeted that “At President @realDonaldTrump’s direction, the National Guard is on the way along with other federal protective services.”

She added, “We reiterate President Trump’s call against violence and to remain peaceful.”

Republican lawmakers have publicly called for Trump to more vocally condemn the violence and to call to an end to the occupation, which halted a joint session of Congress where lawmakers were beginning to count electoral votes.

Trump lost the November election to Democrat Joe Biden. He has refused to concede and has worked over the last two months to convince his supporters that widespread voter fraud prevented his own victory.

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(UPDATE: 12:49 p.m.) - Republican lawmakers are increasingly calling on President Donald Trump to act to deescalate the violent protests at the U.S. Capitol by his supporters angry about his election loss.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said he spoke with the president earlier Wednesday and told him to make a statement to “make sure that we can calm individuals down.”

Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio tweeted that “it is crucial you help restore order by sending resources to assist the police and ask those doing this to stand down.”

Republican Rep. Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey told The Associated Press that while he sympathizes with the protesters’ position, they shouldn’t get violent, and it would be “nice” if Trump called on them to “protest in a peaceful way in an appropriate spot, where you belong, where you should be.”

Many Republicans had backed Trump’s false claims of widespread voter spread to explain away his defeat to President-elect Joe Biden.

Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Gallagher, of Wisconsin, posted a video message urging Trump to “call it off.”

“This is Banana Republic crap that we’re watching right now,” said Gallagher, who had spoken out against objections from fellow Republicans to certifying President-elect Joe Biden's Electoral College vote.

The Department of Homeland Security is sending additional federal agents to the U.S. Capitol to help quell violence from supporters of President Donald Trump who are protesting Congress’ formal approval of President-elect Joe Biden’s win.

A spokesperson told The Associated Press on Wednesday that officers from the Federal Protective Service and U.S. Secret Service agents are being sent to the scene. He says they were requested to assist by U.S. Capitol Police.

Dozens of Trump supporters breached security perimeters and entered the Capitol as Congress was meeting, expected to vote and affirm Joe Biden’s presidential win. They were seen fighting with officers both inside the building and outside.

Trump has riled up his supporters by falsely claiming widespread voter fraud to explain his loss.

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(UPDATE: 12:30 p.m.) - One person has been shot at the U.S. Capitol as dozens of supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the building and violently clashed with police.

That’s according to a person familiar with the matter who spoke to The Associated Press on Wednesday on condition of anonymity amid a chaotic situation.

The exact circumstances surrounding the shooting were unclear. The person said the victim had been taken to a hospital. Their condition was not known.

The shooting came as dozens of Trump supporters breached security perimeters and entered the U.S. Capitol as Congress was meeting, expected to vote and affirm Joe Biden’s presidential win. Trump has riled up his supporters by falsely claiming widespread voter fraud to explain his loss.

President Donald Trump is encouraging supporters occupying the U.S. Capitol to “remain peaceful,” but he is not calling for them to disperse.

As he faced growing pressure from allies to condemn the violence Wednesday afternoon, Trump tweeted, “No violence!” adding: “Remember, WE are the Party of Law & Order – respect the Law and our great men and women in Blue.”

But Trump did not ask supporters to vacate the area as the unrest continued.

Trump had appeared earlier at a rally and had urged his supporters to march to the Capitol - at one point even suggesting he would join them. He is upset that he lost the presidential election to Democrat Joe Biden and has falsely claimed voter fraud to explain it away.

He also urged his supporters to “get rid of the weak Congress people” - presumably through primary challenges - saying, “get the weak ones get out; this is the time for strength.”

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(UPDATE: 11:52 a.m.) - Lawmakers are being evacuated from the U.S. Capitol after protesters breached security and entered the building.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other senators were led out, escorted by staff and police on Wednesday afternoon. Members of the House were also being evacuated. Both chambers had been debating the certification of Joe Biden’s victory in the Electoral College.

The skirmishes came shortly after President Donald Trump addressed thousands of his supporters, riling up the crowd with his baseless claims of election fraud.

Protesters could be seen marching through the Capitol’s stately Statuary Hall shouting and waving Trump banners and American flags.

Some House lawmakers tweeted they were sheltering in place in their offices.

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The U.S. Capitol locked down Wednesday with lawmakers inside as violent clashes broke out between supporters of President Donald Trump police.

An announcement was played inside the Capitol as lawmakers were meeting and expected to vote to affirm Joe Biden’s victory. 

WATCH LIVE: Congress counts Electoral College vote

The skirmishes occurred outside the building, in the very spot president-elect Biden will be inaugurated in just two weeks.

Protesters tore down metal barricades at the bottom of the Capitol’s steps and were met by officers in riot gear. Some tried to push past the officers who held shields and officers could be seen firing pepper spray into the crowd to keep them back.

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