Several U.S. Capitol officers suspended after violent protest in Washington

Click to play video: 'U.S. Capitol riot: Arrests made, people involved in pro-Trump mob identified'
U.S. Capitol riot: Arrests made, people involved in pro-Trump mob identified
WATCH: U.S. Capitol riot — Arrests made, people involved in pro-Trump mob identified – Jan 8, 2021

Several U.S. Capitol police officers have been suspended after a violent riot in Washington, D.C., last week, the force’s acting chief says.

In a statement on Monday, acting police chief Yogananda Pittman, said the department is “actively reviewing video and other open source materials” in which officers and other officials “appear to be in violation of Department regulations and policies.”

Click to play video: 'Canadian social media sleuths track down U.S. Capitol rioters'
Canadian social media sleuths track down U.S. Capitol rioters

“Several USCP officers have already been suspended pending the outcome of their investigations,” she said.

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Pittman said the force will “investigate these behaviours for disciplinary action, up to, and including, termination.”

Earlier on Monday, Democratic Representative Tim Ryan (D-OH) said one of the officers was suspended after taking a selfie with rioters.

Another officer was allegedly seen wearing a Make America Great Again hat and started directing the mob around the Capitol, Ryan told a virtual press conference.

Read more: 4 dead after Trump supporters storm U.S. Capitol, delaying electoral vote count

He said a  third individual has been arrested, however it is unclear whether the third person arrested was a Capitol police officer or part of the National Guard.

Ryan, who represents Ohio’s 13th congressional district, chairs the House’s Appropriations Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch which oversees the Capitol Police. He said there were between 10 and 15 other officers under investigation for their behaviour during the riot.

“Capitol Police are looking at everybody involved that could have potentially facilitated at a big level or small level in any way,” he said.

“We need all hands on deck moving forward and we can’t have somebody protecting on the inauguration that was not doing their job during the January 6th event.”

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Chaos descended on the Capitol after supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump stormed the building in an extraordinary attempt to prevent the certification of President-Elect Joe Biden.

The riot left five people dead, including a U.S. Capitol officer, who died after sustained injuries from interacting with protesters.

The U.S. Congress reconvened later that night, with U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence affirming Biden’s election win early Thursday morning.

Click to play video: 'Canadian social media sleuths track down U.S. Capitol rioters'
Canadian social media sleuths track down U.S. Capitol rioters

The FBI is now investigating the incident, and is seeking help in identifying those responsible for the violence.

A number of arrests have been made, with dozens now facing charges.

According to an Associated Press report, more than a dozen lawmakers were also present during the violent protests.

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The FBI is now warning there could be another round of violent protests in Washington, D.C., and in other states ahead of Biden’s inauguration.

According to Pittman, there are “comprehensive, coordinated plans in place to ensure the safety and security of the Congressional community and the upcoming Presidential Inauguration.”

“There will be no public access to the Capitol Grounds during the Inauguration,” she said. “And the event will go on as scheduled.”

Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris are set to be sworn into office on Jan. 20.

In the days since the riots, lawmakers on both sides have called for Trump to resign.

Read more: ‘Really no way’ Trump could be removed from office before Inauguration Day, expert says

House Democrats are now planning to level another impeachment article against the president for “incitement of insurrection.”

The lower chamber of Congress is expected to vote on the article later this week.If the Democrats are successful in their bid, Trump would become the only president in history to be impeached twice.


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