The latest attack puts US Capitol police in jeopardy

Washington (AP) — US Capitol Police are struggling.

The driver killed one police officer and injured another Crash into a barricade Friday afternoon.Attack comes after police Overrun and injured When a violent crowd of Trump supporters struck the Capitol on January 6, they broke through inadequate barriers and pushed their path within the steps of lawmakers. One police officer died and another police officer committed suicide.

Many executives are considering early retirement, top leaders have resigned, and incumbent executives are increasingly facing criticism. Security concerns about what happened in the last four months can change not only how the department operates, but also whether it can historically remain open.

The head of the Parliamentary Police Union said the officers were “rewinding” after the death of officer Billy Evans on Friday. A person who had power for 18 years.. According to investigators, he was attacked by a man suffering from delusions and suicidal ideation at the entrance to the Capitol.

Evans’s death comes after the police Brian Chic NickHe was among the hundreds of police officers who tried to repel the riot without the necessary equipment and plans, but died after the riot on January 6. Officer Howard Liebengood committed suicide shortly thereafter.

In a statement, union chairman Gus Papa Sanashiou said hundreds of executives were considering retiring or finding employment elsewhere. “They continue to work, even as they rapidly approach the crisis of morale and troop numbers,” he said, saying police are dealing with “massive overtime.”

Other police officers during an internal investigation into the ministry’s response, including a police officer who shot and killed a 35-year-old woman while dozens of police officers were injured and a 35-year-old woman was gathering at a barricade doorway on January 6. Lost his job. This will further deplete units with more than 200 vacant seats, about 10% of the allowed unit level.

In the months following the riots, many police officers have been doing more than 12 hours of day-to-day work to protect the building during Biden’s January 20 inauguration and impeachment proceedings against Trump.

“This strips off the cap and continues to provide a level of uncertainty and concern about the workplace and what is happening there,” said Ohio, chair of a subcommittee overseeing parliamentary police funding. Democrat Tim Ryan said. “And I think this is a very personal thing for many of us who have loved and respected the Capitol Police more than ever because of what we did on January 6th. Was safe. “

Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman received a motion of no confidence from the union in February, reflecting widespread distrust between Rank and File. Pittman, the assistant chief of intelligence during the riots, admitted that he had not seen the FBI’s assessment the day before the “war” warning at the Capitol.

Steven Sund, who resigned in January as head of the agency in a scrutiny of whether police were well prepared for the riots, told The Associated Press that the police officer he spoke to was “on the edge.”

Sadness and crisis involving Parliamentary police are also part of the wider social forces that have tested the country, Sand said.

“A pandemic affects the American spirit. There is a lot of social media and a lot of behavior related to law enforcement behavior. Law enforcement is being attacked in cities across the country. There are many things that are ready to make 2020 and 2021 a little more unique. “

Parliament police are not typical law enforcement agencies. Approximately 2,000 officers are solely responsible for the protection of Congress — its members, visitors, facilities and an area of ​​approximately 16 acres.

The division dates back to the early 1800s after President John Quincy Adams requested that police be set up to protect the building after the incident there. Currently, their operating budget is $ 460 million.

According to officials, 25-year-old Noah Green, the driver of the incident on Friday, was shot by police shortly after getting out of the car with a knife. Green later died in the hospital. There is no known relationship between the riots and Green, who is under the ideological control of the government and described himself in an online post as being monitored.

A new concrete barrier has been installed around the checkpoint where Evans and his colleagues stood north of the Capitol. However, the attack emphasizes that the Houses of Parliament will always be the target, said retired Vice Admiral Russell Honore. Chaired the task force It made some security recommendations following the riots.

“It’s the most important building in America because it’s our democratic hub,” Honore told ABC “this week” on Sunday. “If the building and the people in it don’t work, we no longer lose democracy, and whatever the price we have to pay to protect it, we need to do it. . “

The Task Force called for new pushes to fill the Force’s 233 job openings and for Congress to fund 350 new jobs and new fencing systems and other infrastructure. The Task Force also wants Congress to give new powers to the Capitol Police Chief to seek National Guard assistance in the event of a crisis. Sandoz claims that three Capitol Police Board leaders delayed his call for help from guards on January 6, but former committee members have denied this.

Union president Papa Sanashiou supported Honore’s recommendation and said he had met him and his team on Thursday, the day before Evans’ death.

“As I explained to him, these improvements are important, but our top priority is to retain existing officers,” Papathanasiou said. “There are immediate steps that Congress can take to address this.”

Virginia Democrat Jennifer Wexton has been in contact with her family after Levengood’s death. She called for a program that encourages “peer-to-peer” discussions between officers about the trauma they suffered, apart from the fact that mental health professionals were called in to meet with officers.

“I just want to make sure I’m taking care of the Capitol police officers because it’s constant among all of these,” she said. Take care of the police. “


The merchant reported from Houston. Associated Press writers Michael Balsamo, Colleen Long, and Lisa Mascaro contributed to this report.