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Analyzing the police response to the U.S. Capitol siege 08:06

At least four people are dead after supporters of President Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, forcing Congress to evacuate as lawmakers counted electoral votes to certify President-elect Joe Biden's victory in the November election. The chaos erupted shortly after Mr. Trump gave a speech once again falsely claiming to have won a second term and vowing "we will never concede."

One woman was shot and killed by police after breaching the Capitol and attempting to enter the House chamber. Three others died as a result of "medical emergencies," according to the Metropolitan Police Department.

Troops from Virginia, Maryland and the D.C. National Guard were deployed to help quell the violence. Several hours after the initial breach, law enforcement announced the Capitol had been secured.

As the chaos ensued, Mr. Trump told his supporters to go home but repeated the false, inflammatory claim that the election had been stolen. "We have to have peace, we have to have law and order," the president said.

Police said 52 arrests were made Wednesday. Four were related to weapons charges and six firearms were recovered. Two pipe bombs, one near the Republican National Committee and one near the Democratic National Committee, were also recovered, along with a cooler filled with Molotov cocktails.

The Senate and House both reconvened late Wednesday to resume counting the Electoral College votes. "The United States and the United States Congress have faced down much greater threats than the unhinged crowd we saw today," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. "We've never been deterred before and we'll not be deterred today."


FBI asking for assistance identifying those who instigated violence in D.C.

The FBI on Wednesday said it is asking for assistance in "identifying individuals who are actively instigating violence in Washington, D.C."

The FBI is urging anyone who "witnessed unlawful violent actions," to submit information, videos or photos to their online tips portal.

Trump protest
Pro-Trump protesters tear down a barricade on January 6, 2021. Shannon Stapleton / REUTERS
By Jordan Freiman

D.C. police say 4 people died at the Capitol on Wednesday

Four people died during the violent protest at the Capitol, according to Metro D.C. police. One woman was shot by police, and three others died as a result of medical emergencies. 

So far, more than 52 people have been arrested. Of those, 47 were related to curfew violations. 

Law enforcement officials said they also found two pipe bombs, one at the Republican National Committee and one at the Democratic National Committee. A molotov cocktail was also found not far from the Capitol. 

By Kathryn Watson

D.C. mayor extends public emergency for 15 days

Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser announced Wednesday night that she is extending the city's emergency declaration for another 15 days, citing the violence earlier in the day from Trump supporters who stormed the U.S. Capitol.

"They have fired chemical irritants, bricks, bottles, and guns. They have breached the security of the Capitol and their destructive and riotous behavior has the potential to spread beyond the Capitol. Their motivation is ongoing," Bowser said in a statement.

Bowser also noted that it is likely "some persons" will continue to protest violently through inauguration day on January 20.

Trump Supporters DC
Police hold back protesters on January 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C.  Robert Nickelsberg/Getty
By Jordan Freiman

New York governor deploying members of New York National Guard to D.C.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday announced he is deploying 1,000 members of the New York National Guard to Washington, D.C., for up to two weeks "to aid and facilitate the peaceful transition of presidential power."

"For 244 years, the cornerstone of our democracy has been the peaceful transfer of power, and New York stands ready to help ensure the will of the American people is carried out, safely and decisively," Cuomo added.

By Jordan Freiman

White House deputy press secretary resigns

White House deputy press secretary Sarah Matthews resigned on Wednesday night. In a statement to CBS News, Matthews said, "As someone who worked in the halls of Congress I was deeply disgruntled by what I saw today. I'll be stepping down from my role, effective immediately. Our nation needs a peaceful transfer of power."

By Jordan Freiman

Jimmy Carter calls Capitol assault "a national tragedy"

Former president Jimmy Carter released a statement saying he and his wife, Rosalynn, were "troubled by the violence at the U.S. Capitol today."

"This is a national tragedy and is not who we are as a nation," Mr. Carter said. "Having observed elections in troubled democracies worldwide, I know that we the people can unite to walk back from this precipice to peacefully uphold the laws of our nation, and we must. We join our fellow citizens in praying for a peaceful resolution so our nation can heal and complete the transfer of power as we have for more than two centuries."  

By Jordan Freiman

Facebook and Instagram lock Trump's account for 24 hours

Instagram announced Wednesday it is locking President Trump's account for 24 hours. Facebook, which owns Instagram, also moved to lock the president's account for 24 hours a short time earlier. In a now-removed video posted across multiple social media platforms, Mr. Trump repeated false claims that the election was stolen from him as violent protesters breached the U.S. Capitol.

Twitter has also locked Mr. Trump's account for 12 hours, starting from when he deletes tweets that violated the platform's policies. His account will remain locked if the tweets are not deleted.

By Jordan Freiman

Mattis says Capitol assault was "fomented by Mr. Trump"

Former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said the assault on the Capitol was "fomented by Mr. Trump," writing that "his use of the Presidency to destroy trust in our election and to poison our respect for fellow citizens has been enabled by pseudo political leaders whose names will live in infamy as profiles in cowardice."

"Our Constitution and our Republic will overcome this stain and We the People will come together again in our never-ending effort to form a more perfect Union, while Mr. Trump will deservedly be left a man without a country," Mattis added.  

By Victoria Albert

RNC condemns assault on U.S. Capitol

The Republican National Committee on Wednesday released a statement condemning the violent assault on the U.S. Capitol earlier in the day.

"These violent scenes we have witnessed do not represent acts of patriotism, but an attack on our country and its founding principles," the statement said. "Our Founding Fathers established a nation of laws, not a nation of anarchy. We call for all those involved to listen to law officials and help restore order in our nation's capital."

By Jordan Freiman

Obama urges Republican lawmakers to "choose reality" and accept Electoral College results

Former President Barack Obama blamed President Trump for the violence at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday and urged Republican lawmakers to "choose reality" and counter the president's misinformation by accepting the results of the Electoral College.

Mr. Obama said the violence was "incited by a sitting president who has continued to baselessly lie about the outcome of a lawful election," adding that "For two months now, a political party and its accompanying media ecosystem has too often been unwilling to tell their followers the truth — that this was not a particularly close election and that President-Elect Biden will be inaugurated on January 20." 

"Right now, Republican leaders have a choice made clear in the desecrated chambers of democracy," Mr. Obama said.  "They can continue down this road and keep stoking the raging fires. Or they can choose reality and take the first steps toward extinguishing the flames. They can choose America." 

After being evacuated from the building earlier in the day, lawmakers have now returned to the Capitol to count the Electoral College votes and seal President-elect Biden's victory in the November election. It is not yet clear if the lawmakers who previously said they would object to the results will change their minds after Wednesday's violence.

Trump supporters
Trump supporters gather outside the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021. Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty
By Victoria Albert

At least 13 arrested at D.C. protests

At least 13 people were arrested in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, according to Mayor Muriel Bowser. Most of the people arrested live outside of D.C. 

Bowser said police recovered five weapons, including long guns and handguns.

By Justin Bey

Twitter locks Trump's account for at least 12 hours over Capitol tweets

Twitter has locked President Trump's Twitter account for at least 12 hours over his tweets about the assault on the U.S. Capitol, the company said Wednesday. 

"As a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C., we have required the removal of three  @realDonaldTrump Tweets that were posted earlier today for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy," the company said. "This means that the account of @realDonaldTrump will be locked for 12 hours following the removal of these Tweets. If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked." 

The company warned that future violations of the policy could result in the permanent suspension of Mr. Trump's account. 

Multiple posts from Mr. Trump were pulled from his account earlier Wednesday. In a video that was removed, Mr. Trump told his supporters to leave the Capitol but also stated countless false claims around the election. The company also removed a tweet in which he said, "These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long." 

When it first restricted Mr. Trump's video, the company said it is "working proactively to protect the health of the public conversation occurring on the service and will take action on any content that violates the Twitter Rules." 

This news comes as public officials have called on Twitter's leadership to remove Mr. Trump's platform. According to the social media site's terms of use, "threats of and calls to violence are against the Twitter Rules."

Many of Mr. Trump's past tweets and video statements have been flagged by the company as "disputed claims," but none tweeted directly by the president's account have been actively removed.


Lawmakers vow to finish counting electoral votes after assault on Capitol

Pelosi says Congress should resume counting of electoral votes hours after massive protest 04:46

As a curfew took effect in Washington, D.C., hours after a violent mob descended on the U.S. Capitol building, Republicans and Democrats in Congress vowed to charge ahead with their constitutional duty of counting the electoral votes that will reaffirm President-elect Joe Biden's victory.

Lawmakers appeared ready to reconvene in the wake of the day's remarkable events, which descended into chaos and violence when pro-Trump demonstrators breached security barriers and gained entry to the Capitol building.

"I have faced violent hatred before. I was not deterred then, and I will not be deterred now," Congressman Jim Clyburn, a Democrat from South Carolina, tweeted. "Tonight, Congress will continue the business of certifying the electoral college votes."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that after consulting with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, Clyburn, the majority whip, and speaking with the Pentagon, the Justice Department, and Vice President Mike Pence, proceedings would continue at the Capitol.

"We always knew this responsibility would take us into the night. The night may still be long but we are hopeful for a shorter agenda, but our purpose will be accomplished," she wrote in a letter to Democratic colleagues.

Pelosi said the assault on the Capitol cannot "deter us from our responsibility to validate the election of Joe Biden."

Read more here.

By Melissa Quinn

Congresswoman describes holding location as "super-spreader event"

Representative Susan Wild said Wednesday that holding members of Congress in the same location is a "super-spreader event," adding that some lawmakers are not wearing masks. The Pennsylvania Democrat said that after lawmakers were evacuated from the Capitol building, they were placed in a secure location with 300 to 400 people.

"It's what I would call a COVID super spreader event. About half of the people in the room are not wearing masks, even though they've been offered surgical masks," Wild said on CBSN. "They've refused to wear them."

When asked who wasn't wearing a mask, Wild pointed to Republicans - although she noted that many Republicans did wear a mask. She said some freshman Republican congressmen appeared to be "openly flaunting" the fact that they would not wear a mask.

"It's exactly the kind of situation that we've been told by the medical doctors not to be in, you know, close proximity, especially with people who aren't wearing masks," Wild added. "We weren't even allowed to get together with our families for Thanksgiving and Christmas, and now we're in a room with people who are flaunting the rules and are very much crowded in here."  

By Victoria Albert

Pelosi says Congress should "proceed tonight at the Capitol once it is cleared for use"

In a letter to colleagues on Wednesday evening, Pelosi condemned the "shameful" riots in the Capitol and said she believed Congress should proceed with tallying Electoral College votes once the Capitol is secured.

"Today, a shameful assault was made on our democracy. It was anointed at the highest level of government. It cannot, however, deter us from our responsibility to validate the election of Joe Biden," Pelosi said. "To that end, in consultation with Leader Hoyer and Whip Clyburn and after calls to the Pentagon, the Justice Department and the Vice President, we have decided we should proceed tonight at the Capitol once it is cleared for use. Leader Hoyer will be sending out more guidance later today."

Pelosi also expressed hope that "this instigation to violence will provide an epiphany for our country to heal."

"We always knew this responsibility would take us into the night. The night may still be long but we are hopeful for a shorter agenda, but our purpose will be accomplished," Pelosi said. "We also knew that we would be a part of history in a positive way, today, despite ill-founded objections to the Electoral College vote. We now will be part of history, as such a shameful picture of our country was put out to the world, instigated at the highest level."

trump protests
Trump supporters repelled by police officers as a curfew is in order, outside the US Capitol in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021.  BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI via getty
By Grace Segers

Trump continues to repeat false election claims

As protesters continued to clash with police at the U.S. Capitol, President Trump tweeted: "These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long."

"Go home with love & in peace," Mr. Trump added. "Remember this day forever!" 

Mr. Trump has been criticized by lawmakers for failing to take a stronger stance against the violence. In a video posted earlier Wednesday, he urged supporters to leave but also repeated multiple false claims about the election. He did not denounce the violence from the group.

By Victoria Albert

Inside the Senate chamber as lawmakers evacuated and rioters stormed the Capitol

Firsthand account from inside the Capitol: "Things have been really scary" 01:35

I was sitting inside the Senate press gallery Wednesday afternoon, crafting an email to send to the CBS News bureau describing the events of the past half-hour of debate over objections to Arizona's slate of electors, when Vice President Mike Pence was swiftly evacuated from the Senate chamber. I assumed it was for security purposes, given the crowds of rowdy demonstrators that had gathered outside the building.

I quickly devised an email to shoot to my editors letting them know that Pence had left, figuring it was a false alarm. But soon, Senate gallery staffers were shouting "lock the doors," and it was clear that the situation was serious. Reporters were ushered into the press gallery above the Senate chamber, and the doors were locked. We could hear the muffled sound of the rioters outside.

Electronics aren't allowed in the chamber, but I brought my laptop and cell phone inside to let my editors know I was safe. Senators were on their phones, presumably calling loved ones, as police officers eyed the locked doors. At one point, Senator Amy Klobuchar shouted that there had been shots fired, urging her colleagues to stay away from the doors and take the situation seriously.

Suddenly, senators began filing out to be evacuated. Reporters were initially stuck in the gallery on the third floor overlooking the chamber. Senator Cory Booker called up to the reporters on the balcony, asking how we were doing. I laughed, probably with a tinge of hysteria. "We're doing great," I called back down.

Reporters were shuffled out of the chamber and guided by Capitol police officers alongside the senators to a secure location. The Senate went into recess, and the rioters gained access to the chamber soon after.

Read more here.

By Grace Segers

Former President George W. Bush calls attack on Capitol "sickening"

Former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura Bush issued a statement Wednesday condemning the Trump supporters' protests on the Capitol, calling the scene "mayhem" and an "insurrection."

"The violent assault on the Capitol- and disruption of a constitutionally mandated meeting of Congress - was undertaken by people whose passions have been inflamed by falsehoods and false hopes," the statement said.

They also called for both the rioters and "every patriotic citizen" to support the "rule of law."

By Zoe Christen Jones

Woman shot in Capitol dies of injuries

The woman who was shot inside the U.S. Capitol has died from her injuries, a Metropolitan Police Department spokesperson told CBS News. The spokesperson, Alaina Gertz, said the woman was a civilian. 

Police have not yet released the identity of the woman and it is unclear at this time who fired the shot that killed her. At least seven others were injured during the protest. — Justin Carissimo & Jordan Freiman

Read more here.

trump protest U.S. Capitol
Demonstrators walk through the U.S. Capitol after breaching barricades to the building during a protest outside of Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021.  Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg via Getty

Facebook removes Trump's video telling protestors to "go home"

Facebook has removed President Trump's video statement calling for rioters to leave, citing "emergency measures."

"We removed it because on balance we believe it contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence," Guy Rosen, Facebook's vice president of integrity, tweeted.

Facebook is one of several social media platforms flagging Mr. Trump's recent content as going against their terms of use, however, they are the first to completely remove the message rather than flagging it as unwarranted.

In a statement, the company called Wednesday's violence a "disgrace."

"We prohibit incitement and calls for violence on our platform. We are actively reviewing and removing any content that breaks these rules." 

By Zoe Christen Jones

7 hospitalized amid violence

Seven people were injured amid the violence on Wednesday, according to D.C. Fire and EMS. One of the injured suffered abrasions and fractures from a fall, while another suffered cardiac arrest, officials said.

Police later said a woman died after she was shot at the Capitol. She was previously hospital and listed in critical condition. 

Trump Protests
Supporters of President Trump climb the west wall of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, in Washington. Jose Luis Magana / AP
By Graham Kates

Police attempt to retake Capitol from protesters

Flashbangs and an apparent chemical irritant emanated from an entrance to the Capitol as police in riot control gear slowly began to clear rioters who had been tightly crowded around the door around 5 p.m. Wednesday. 

The scene unfolded after hours of chaos saw the Capitol placed on lockdown and legislators whisked away to hidden locations following an unprecedented breach of the building by the president's supporters. 

Supporters of President Trump protest inside the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. ROBERTO SCHMIDT/getty
By Graham Kates

"Stop the Steal" and "trial by combat": How Trump and Giuliani riled up the crowd that headed to the Capitol

Addressing a crowd of supporters outside the White House on Wednesday morning, Rudy Giuliani, an attorney for President Trump, said "let's have trial by combat." Thousands had gathered to protest certification of president-elect Joe Biden's victory in the 2020 election. The president later lauded Giuliani's speech in an address of his own in which he once again called on supporters to "Stop the Steal" and declared, "We will never concede." 

Following Mr. Trump's remarks, his supporters marched to the Capitol and members of the crowd stormed the building, breaking in and clashing with police in a series of violent altercations. One woman was shot and at least five others injured.

By Graham Kates

Trump says "stop the violence" but stokes the country's divisions

In a video meant to quell chaos at the Capitol, President Trump on Wednesday repeated claims that the election he lost was "stolen," before telling his supporters who stormed the Capitol, "You have to go home now." The video comes after other national leaders, including President-elect Joe Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, called on Mr. Trump to send his supporters home after violence erupted at the Capitol.

"We have to have peace, we have to have law and order," Mr. Trump said in the video statement. He then reiterated more false claims about the election, before once again telling his supporters to leave. "We have to have peace. So go home, we love you, you're very special."

By Graham Kates

Schumer and Pelosi call on Trump to rein in protesters

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi have called on President Trump to rein in the violent protestors at the U.S. Capitol.

"We are calling on President Trump to demand that all protestors leave the U.S. Capitol and Capitol Grounds immediately," Schumer and Pelosi said in a joint statement.

The news comes as pro-Trump rioters stormed the Capitol. After Mr. Trump called for the protestors at the Capitol to remain peaceful, Schumer responded on Twitter, saying "It's a little late for that. Don't you think?"

Trump supporters storm Capitol
Security forces block the entrance of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.  Anadolu Agency/Getty
By Zoe Christen Jones

Biden condemns violent protests at Capitol and calls on Trump to "step up"

President-elect Joe Biden called on President Trump to make a national television appearance condemning his supporters who stormed the Capitol, calling the stunning breach "an assault on the rule of law like few times we've ever seen."

Biden said the supporters of President Trump who violently clashed with police before making their way into the building, committed "an assault on the citadel of liberty, on the Capitol itself."

He called on Mr. Trump to "step up."

"The words of a president matter no matter how good or bad that president is. At their best the words of a president can inspire, at their worst they can incite," Biden said.

Biden: "Our democracy is under unprecedented assault" 09:29
By Graham Kates

Kevin McCarthy calls violent protests "un-American"

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said in an interview on CBS News Wednesday afternoon that protesters who have stormed the Capitol in support of President Trump are "un-American."

"I completely condemn the violence in the Capitol," McCarthy said, adding that he believed some of the protesters who breached the building appeared to have planned the incursion.

"If you watched some of the people, some of the things I saw inside this Capitol. There are people that have plans, there are people who want to make America look like this," McCarthy said.

By Graham Kates

National Guard deployed to protect the Capitol

The president deployed the National Guard to protect the Capitol from his supporters Wednesday afternoon, hours after they stormed the building, breaching it in a chaotic and violent scene. The clashes with Capitol police outside and within the building followed a fiery speech by Mr. Trump in which he once against falsely claimed to have won the November election.

The decision to deploy the National Guard was announced in a tweet by White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany.

Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as people try to storm the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021.  JOSEPH PREZIOSO via Getty
By Graham Kates

Secret Service and Federal Protective Service being deployed to Capitol

Secret Service and the Federal Protective Service will provide assistance to Capitol Hill Police, a Department of Homeland Security spokesperson told CBS News.

Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser has requested that the Department of Defense deploy 200 members of the National Guard, and that request is under review.

By Camilo Montoya-Galvez

Video shows protester breaking window at Capitol Building

Video taken from within the Capitol by Slate writer Jim Newell showed a protester using a blunt object to break a glass window on a door to the Capitol. Senators have been moved to a safe location, and police wearing riot control gear are inside the building.

By Graham Kates

DHS official calls for protesters to leave Capitol building

Ken Cuccinelli, a Department of Homeland Security official, called for the president's supporters to leave the Capitol building in a tweet Wednesday afternoon.

"For months over the summer we rightly condemned Antifa for storming federal buildings in Portland. If you are entering the Capitol Building against police orders, you must leave. There is a proper venue to resolve grievances. This is not it," Cuccinelli wrote.

By Graham Kates

Journalists being evacuated from Capitol with senators

CBS News' Grace Segers reports that she and other journalists are being evacuated from the Capitol, along with senators. She was seated in the Senate Gallery for the counting of the Electoral College votes when protesters descended on the Capitol Wednesday afternoon.

Journalists and senators are moving from the Capitol building to another Senate building via the network of tunnels connecting the various congressional buildings

"There is a huge security presence," Segers said. "It's really crazy."

Authorities first evacuated senators and then said press could follow, taking elevators down from the gallery to avoid protesters that had made it past security into the building. — Arden Farhi

Capitol protest — Washington, D.C.
Members of Congress run for cover as protesters try to enter the House Chamber during a joint session of Congress on January 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C.  Getty


U.S. Capitol Police urge those inside Capitol to "seek cover"

U.S. Capitol Police have sent a security alert warning of an "Internal Security Threat." It urges those inside the Capitol to "move inside office/lock doors, seek cover, and remain silent." A few minutes earlier, an audio recording played inside the Capitol Complex buildings saying that the complex is under lockdown. — Arden Farhi

APTOPIX Electoral College Protests
Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier on Wednesday, January 6, 2021, at the Capitol in Washington.  Julio Cortez / AP


Trump calls for the support of Capitol Police: "Stay peaceful!"

In a tweet, President Trump appeared to attempt rein in a chaotic and spiraling situation at the Capitol, where his supporters clashed with police and breached the building.

"Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!" The president tweeted.

The building was placed under lockdown earlier Wednesday as packs of Mr. Trump's supporters roamed the halls.

By Graham Kates

D.C. mayor declares 6 p.m. curfew

After protesters stormed the Capitol, leading to a lockdown and small skirmishes with police, Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser declared a 6 p.m. curfew, barring civilians other than essential workers from being out in public places this evening.

By Graham Kates

Protesters breach Capitol building

A small group of protesters managed to get inside the Capitol building around 2 p.m. Wednesday. Sessions of the House and Senate were abruptly recessed as the building was placed under lockdown. 

Supporters of President Trump enter the Capitol on January 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C. SAUL LOEB

The U.S. Capitol Police sent a text alert reading, "Capitol: Internal Security Threat: move inside office/lock doors, seek cover, and remain silent."

By Graham Kates
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