Capitol Police Chief Says Pleas for Backup Were Ignored

The outgoing head of the Capitol Police requested that D.C. National Guard units be placed on standby in case his small force was overwhelmed by violent protesters last Wednesday, but he was rebuffed by House and Senate security officials and a top Pentagon commander, he said in an interview on Sunday.

Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, who resigned under pressure last week, said he made the request two days before Wednesday’s riot after reviewing intelligence that indicated the demonstration would be larger and more violent that previously anticipated — and repeated his request as he watched the rioters attacking his officers.

“If we would have had the National Guard, we could have held them at bay longer, until more officers from our partner agencies could arrive,” Mr. Sund, who served in the top post for under a year, told The Washington Post.

In the end, the Capitol Police, outnumbered, was unable to hold back a mob several times its size, resulting in a violent invasion of the national legislature not seen since the War of 1812. Representative Tim Ryan, Democrat of Ohio, told reporters on Monday that two officers had been suspended: one who took selfies with rioters, and one who put on a “Make America Great Again” hat and directed rioters in the Capitol.

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