New footage shows rioters on Capitol Hill dragging officer through crowd
By Hannah Rabinowitz and Marshall Cohen, CNN
The Justice Department released new police body camera footage on Friday showing one of the most disturbing assaults in the Capitol uprising – where three officers waded through the crowd to save a pro rioter -Trump who was trampled, stripped of his protective gear, dragged down a staircase and attacked with crutches, flag poles, batons and with his bare hands.
The DOJ released the videos after CNN and other outlets sued for access. All of the officers involved in this incident worked for the Washington, DC Police Force. They were identified by initials in court documents.
Agent AW came out of a tunnel where police were gathered and into the crowd to help Rosanne Boyland, 34, a rioter and QAnon supporter who was trampled on by the crowd. She died of an accidental drug overdose, according to the Washington, DC chief medical examiner. Boyland’s body is seen in some of the new videos, which also show his friend screaming for help.
Prosecutors said camera video worn on AW’s body shows the accused Jack Whitton leaping over a barricade, knocking AW onto his back and attempting to remove his staff. Above AW’s head, other rioters hit the police line with flag poles and metal poles. The crowd pulls AW into the crowd as he calls for help. Members of the crowd ignore the call, a rioter leans in and shouts “traitor”. Much of the clip is from AW’s perspective on the floor looking up.
This bottom-up angle shows a man wearing a “sheriff” vest pulling AW down the stairs. He also wears a crest with the logo of the Three Percenters, a far-right group. Despite the “sheriff” label, there is nothing to indicate that this man was part of the police force defending the Capitol. In fact, he was featured on a DC Police Department search poster and named a “person of interest” in the assault on AW.
The attack landed AW at the hospital, where he received staples in the head to stop the bleeding. Whitton has been charged with several crimes, including assault. He hasn’t pleaded yet.
Another officer, CM, tried to help his colleagues. CM’s body camera footage shows another officer dragged through the crowd. It also shows Boyland lying on the ground. This is the first footage released by the US government showing Boyland’s death. She was one of the few Trump supporters who died in the attack.
Prosecutors say the footage then shows defendant Michael Lopatic rushing towards CM, attacking the officer and grabbing him by the head and hitting him. CM’s body camera dislodges and falls to the ground, briefly revealing a splash of blood.
CM suffered a concussion that day, although it may have been caused when he was assaulted a second time later that day in a different incident, court documents show. Lopatic has been charged with several crimes, including assault, and has yet to appear in court.
The Justice Department released two body camera clips of another officer. A clip shows the standoff between rioters and officers trying to get their colleague to safety. Police officers are repeatedly clubbed with poles and what appear to be stolen police batons.
Another body camera clip, recorded about 20 minutes later, shows police in a second tunnel, holding the line with riot shields. Rioters throw objects, hitting shields. According to prosecutors, Whitton is the man who is heard in the clip, shouting to police, “You are going to die tonight”, according to court documents).
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