New January 6 video shows three hours of assault on police
The assault on the Lower West Terrace was one of the most violent confrontations between Capitol Police and the crowd. Officers held the line until the building was cleared without letting rioters inside. Some officers have since said they did not know the Capitol had already been breached in other areas.
The video, taken from a Capitol security camera, does not have sound. It starts as officers retreat, helping each other as they stumble inside and washing their eyes out with water from chemical spray. Rioters crowd in behind them, coordinate efforts to attack and push through in infamous moments that have haunted the public, and officers, ever since.
Once rioters invaded the platform built for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, every officer on it retreated into the tunnel to make their stand, shooting projectiles at rioters as they begin to enter. Members of the crowd climbed on top of each other, swinging fists and poles at the police. Brawls broke out throughout the assault, with rioters punching and kicking at officers on the front line.
Police were able to push the rioters to the edge of the tunnel’s entrance over half an hour into the assault, using pepper spray and their batons against the crowd. Still, after a long standoff with police, the rioters began a second attack on the line of officers.
Weapons used by rioters
In the grueling attack, rioters not only used weapons but also whatever they could get their hands on to attack the police, jabbing them with metal poles, throwing furniture and an audio speaker, spraying a fire extinguisher and pepper spray, using crutches to hit the police, and assaulting the officers with fists and feet.
The rioters also used items taken from the police, including riot shields which they continued to pass up their ranks to push against the officers, and batons which they assaulted police with. At one point in the video, a person can be seen even throwing a firework at the line of officers.
Prosecutors have arrested and charged dozens of rioters for their part in the grisly battle inside the Lower West Terrace tunnel.