The FBI has released new images of the deadly January 6 uprising on the US Capitol as it seeks to identify 10 suspects involved in what the agency says were “some of the most violent attacks on agents.”
Law enforcement continues to pursue more than 100 suspects in the attack on Congress, which Donald Trump was accused of inciting and led to his historic second impeachment trial. Hundreds of people have been arrested after violent mobs invaded the Capitol to try to avoid certification of Joe Biden’s election victory.
But the 10 suspects highlighted this week by federal authorities are considered among the most dangerous still at large.
Each of the clips posted on the FBI Washington Field Office website shows the suspects allegedly assaulting the officers, along with close-ups of their faces, several of them masked but many not.
“The FBI is asking for the public’s help in identifying 10 individuals suspected of being involved in some of the most violent attacks on agents who were protecting the United States Capitol and our democratic process on January 6,” said Steven M D ‘Antuono, deputy director of charge for the FBI’s Washington field office, said in a statement accompanying the images.
“These people are seen on video committing heinous crimes against those who have dedicated their lives to protecting the American people.”
The FBI said it had already received “hundreds of thousands of leads” after the riots that claimed five lives when a mob stormed the Capitol and invaded the US Senate and House of Representatives.
In a rally earlier in the day, the former president incited his supporters to march toward the Capitol building and “fight like hell” in support of his false claims that the elections had been stolen from him.
The massive investigation that followed led to the arrest of more than 300 people, of whom 65 were arrested for assaulting law enforcement officers, the FBI said.
The most recent came this week when the agency arrested and charged two men, Julian Elie Khater, 32, of Pennsylvania, and George Pierre Tanios, 39, of West Virginia, of assaulting Brian Sicknick, a police officer. US Capitol police who died in hospital after the attacks.
Khater was seen in social media images unloading a spray that he referred to as “bear shit” into the 42-year-old officer’s face, court documents allege. The cause of death is still unknown, although researchers believe Sicknick may have ingested a chemical, possibly a bear spray, that may have played a role.
Earlier this month, Christopher Wray, director of the FBI, called the riots “domestic terrorism” in his testimony before Congress.
“That attack, that siege, was criminal behavior, plain and simple, and it is behavior that we, the FBI, see as internal terrorism,” Wray told the Senate judicial committee.
“The problem of internal terrorism has been spreading throughout the country for several years and it is not going to go away anytime soon,” he added, although the analysis has concluded that most of the rioters on January 6 were not linked to any extremist group.
The alleged assaults captured in the new FBI footage take place in a variety of locations around the Capitol. All of the suspects are male, and several are wearing red “Make America Great Again” caps that became the signature of Trump supporters during his tumultuous presidency.
“We are grateful to members of the public who have already been extremely helpful in these investigations,” said D’Antuono.
“We know it can be a difficult decision to report information about family, friends or co-workers, but it is the right thing to do.”
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism