The 104-page document, detailed in a New York Times report from Luke Broadwater on Tuesday, is at the heart of a Capitol Hill hearing set for later this week. In it, Capitol Police Assistant Inspector General Michael A. Bolton extensively lays out the departmental problems that preceded the attack, noting—perhaps most damningly—that police had been informed “Congress itself is the target” prior to Jan. 6.
According to Bolton’s assessment, Capitol Police leaders did not appropriately prepare for the impending violence despite these warnings. Furthermore, officers ultimately used “defective protective equipment” and those within the Civil Disturbance Unit had been ordered to not use some of its more critical crowd control equipment, including stun grenades.
Just one day before the riot, which itself was spurred by baseless claims of election fraud following the decisive defeat of Donald Trump, a plan from police leaders claimed there were “no specific known threats” related to Congress. But several days prior to that statement, an intelligence assessment had warned that Trump supporters posed a threat of violence, with some having gone as far as sharing a Capitol grounds map online.
Moving forward, Bolton has requested the agency put in place guidance that can prevent future shortcomings in the efficient and effective distribution of such intelligence.
On Wednesday federal prosecutors announced they will not pursue charges against the Capitol cop who fatally shot 35-year-old Ashli Babbitt, a Capitol riot participant.
“Specifically, the investigation revealed no evidence to establish that, at the time the officer fired a single shot at Ms. Babbitt, the officer did not reasonably believe that it was necessary to do so in self-defense or in defense of the Members of Congress and others evacuating the House Chamber,” the DOJ said in a press release. “Acknowledging the tragic loss of life and offering condolences to Ms. Babbitt’s family, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and U.S. Department of Justice have therefore closed the investigation into this matter.”