Outgoing US Capitol Police chief Steven Sund said on Monday that security officials from the House of Representatives and the Senate prevented him from enlisting the help of the National Guard ahead of and during Trump supporters’ storming of Congress. . Other officials claim that the police did not ask for help.
The chief of the federal police department, who is in charge of protecting the United States Congress, says against The Washington Post that his executives were unwilling to prepare the National Guard reservists.
Police intelligence revealed that the crowd invited by President Donald Trump to demonstrate against his electoral defeat would be much larger than previous demonstrations. That was ignored, says Sund.
He says he asked security at both the House and Senate if he could request the National Guard to be ready in case he needed reinforcements urgently. Those requests were denied, the police chief said.
Sund’s statement is at odds with that of other officials, who in the aftermath of the storm stated that they could have reinforced the police at the Capitol, but received no request to do so.
Kenneth Rapuani, Deputy Secretary of Defense for National and Global Security, said last week that the Pentagon had contacted the Capitol Police and was told no help from the National Guard was needed.
Sund, who is stepping down on January 16 after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi urged his departure, claims his request for help was turned down or delayed six times, even after repeatedly saying the situation was “serious” .
“If we had the National Guard, we could have kept them (the assailants, ed.) Out longer, until more agents from our partner services had arrived,” he told the newspaper.
Storming claimed five lives
The storming of the US parliament building last Wednesday delayed the official confirmation of the election victory of the upcoming Democratic President Joe Biden.
Senators and deputies were forced to flee after Trump supporters broke into the building. Five people were killed, including a Capitol Police officer, who was beaten to death while trying to push back the assailants.
Trump, who argues without any evidence that Biden owes his victory to large-scale fraud, incited his supporters and initially praised them for the storm. He later condemned the violence.