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Acting Capitol Police chief will tell lawmakers intelligence failed to predict scope of Jan. 6 attack

February 25, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 63.2%. 2 min read.

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 06: Pro-Trump supporters storm the U.S. Capitol following a rally with President Donald Trump on January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC. Trump supporters gathered in the nation's capital today to protest the ratification of President-elect Joe Biden's Electoral College victory over President Trump in the 2020 election. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

Acting US Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman said Wednesday that the agency had taken action ahead of the Jan. 6 riot based on intelligence that extremists planned to participate in the preceding rally and planned to be armed, but that the intelligence failed to predict the scope of the attack, which would ultimately overwhelm officers when the Capitol was breached.

Acting US Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman said Wednesday that the agency had taken action ahead of the Jan. 6 riot based on intelligence that extremists planned to participate in the preceding rally and planned to be armed, but that the intelligence failed to predict the scope of the attack, which would ultimately overwhelm officers when the Capitol was breached.

Had there been better intelligence of the coordinated attack, Pittman suggested, the US Secret Service might not have brought then-Vice President Mike Pence – a target of the insurrectionists – to the Capitol to oversee the certification of the November election that day, according to her testimony released ahead of today's House Appropriations Committee hearing.

"The Department's preparations were based on the information it gathered from its law enforcement partners like the FBI and others within the intelligence community, none of which indicated that a mass insurrection of this scale would occur at the US Capitol on January 6th," Pittman said in her written prepared testimony.

Pittman said in her written testimony that the department's Intelligence and Interagency Coordination Division had produced as many as four intelligence assessments leading up to the riot Jan. 6, with the final assessment showing that members of militias, White supremacists and other extremist groups would participate in the rally and planned to be armed.

But Pittman says the intelligence failed to foresee the scale of the attack that would take place on Jan. 6, with thousands of rioters overwhelming outnumbered Capitol Police officers and breaching the Capitol.

The intelligence told them to prepare for a protest, Pittman plans to say – but never indicated a coordinated attack.

Acting House Sergeant at Arms Timothy Blodgett will say in his prepared remarks that the intelligence prior to Jan. 6 was an issue, citing a Jan. 3 US Capitol Police bulletin as an example of contradictory information that was provided to law enforcement agencies prior to the attack.

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