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Sunday June 20th, 2021 12:16AM

The Latest: Hearing exposes breach between security officers

By The Associated Press
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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on congressional testimony about the Capitol insurrection (all times local):

1:25 p.m.

The former chief law enforcement officer of the U.S. House is denying allegations he didn’t want to call the National Guard before the Jan. 6 riot out of concern that it would look bad.

Paul Irving resigned as House sergeant-at-arms after the deadly insurrection. He testified Tuesday that he met with then-Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund on Jan. 4 and that he believed they agreed not to ask for the Guard. Sund alleged that Irving denied his request for the Guard, citing “optics.”

Said Irving, “I was not concerned about appearance whatsoever.”

The hearing has renewed a remarkable breach between Sund and Irving about why there wasn’t more security at the Capitol. Irving was one of Sund’s superiors.

Sund says he requested Guard help again at 1:09 p.m. on Jan. 6, as rioters were massing outside the building. Irving denies receiving a call at that time.

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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FORMER SECURITY OFFICIALS TESTIFYING ON THE CAPITOL INSURRECTION:

Testifying publicly for the first time about the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, former security officials say that bad intelligence was to blame for the disastrous failure to anticipate the violent intentions of the mob. That left them unprepared for the attack, which was unlike anything they had ever seen before.

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HERE'S WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON:

12:20 p.m.

Police officials who were tasked with protecting the Capitol on Jan. 6 say the FBI did not flag to them an internal report suggesting extremists were preparing for “war.”

The report was issued a day before the riot by the FBI’s Norfolk, Virginia, field office. Washington Metropolitan Police acting Chief Robert Contee says the report came via email and says he believes a warning of that level “would warrant a phone call or something.”

Steven Sund resigned as Capitol Police chief the day after the riot. Sund testified before Congress on Tuesday he was unaware the department had received the report until weeks after the insurrection.

Sund and Contee have criticized the intelligence they received from federal law enforcement about Jan. 6. Sund has called for a review of how the intelligence community studies domestic extremism and shares information across agencies.

The head of the FBI’s office in Washington has said that once he received the Jan. 5 warning from the Virginia office, the information was quickly shared with other law enforcement agencies, including the Capitol Police.

___

11:55 a.m.

The key officials in charge of security at the U.S. Capitol disagree on why they didn’t seek National Guard help before the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Steven Sund resigned as chief of the Capitol Police the day after the riot. Sund testified Tuesday that he requested the National Guard be called at 1:09 p.m. on Jan. 6.

Paul Irving is the former House sergeant-at-arms and was one of Sund’s superiors. Irving says he didn’t receive a request until after 2 p.m. Irving says he did not remember Sund making a request at 1:09.

Rioters breached the Capitol’s west side just after 2 p.m.

Irving says he and other Capitol security leaders agreed before Jan. 6 that “the intelligence did not support the troops and collectively decided to let it go.”

The result was Capitol Police officers were badly outnumbered by rioters who in many cases were better armed and prepared to try to disrupt the certification of Joe Biden’s presidential victory over Donald Trump.

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11:45 a.m.

A top security official has testified that he was “stunned” over the delayed response to a request for National Guard help during the mob riot at the Capitol.

Acting Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Contee III told a joint Senate hearing Tuesday that the former U.S. Capitol Police chief was “pleading” with Army officials to deploy Guard troops as the violence rapidly escalated Jan. 6.

The District of Columbia’s Metropolitan Police officers had joined to help U.S. Capitol Police during the attack.

Contee says police officers “were out there literally fighting for their lives” but the officials on the call appeared to be going through a ”check the boxes” exercise asking about the optics of stationing National Guard troops at the Capitol. Contee says there “was not an immediate response.”

The officials are testifying in the first public hearing over the siege as a mob loyal to Donald Trump stormed the Capitol to disrupt Congress confirming Trump’s defeat to Joe Biden in the presidential election.

___

11:30 a.m.

The former chief of the U.S. Capitol Police says he learned this week that his officers had received a report from an FBI field office in Virginia that forecast in detail the chances extremists could commit “war” in Washington the following day — the day of the Capitol insurrection.

The head of the FBI’s office in Washington has said that once he received the Jan. 5 warning from the Virginia office, the information was quickly shared with other law enforcement agencies through the joint terrorism task force, including the Capitol Police.

Former Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund testified to Congress on Tuesday that an officer on the joint terrorism task force had received the FBI’s memo and forwarded it to a sergeant working on intelligence for the Capitol Police. But Sund says the information was not put forward to any other supervisors. Sund says he wasn’t aware of it.

Sund says he did see an intelligence report created within the Capitol Police force warning that Congress could be targeted on Jan. 6. That report warned extremists were likely to attend and there were calls for people to travel to Washington armed.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News
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