Nearly two years after the Jan. 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol, Capitol police unveiled “significant improvements” to the division to guard in opposition to one other large-scale assault.
Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger mentioned in a information launch that the division is “clearly higher off” than what it was earlier than the occasions of Jan. 6, 2021, when greater than 2,000 protesters outdoors the U.S. Capitol breached the constructing in an effort to subvert the outcomes of the 2020 presidential election. Greater than 140 officers have been injured, and Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick died from a number of strokes after he was sprayed with a chemical substance throughout the riot.
A number of the enhancements highlighted by Manger embody creating relationships with police departments in and across the Washington, D.C. space and bringing on regulation enforcement officers with information of nationwide safety occasions. Congress has additionally handed laws that may allow Capitol police to call in the National Guard, as an alternative of ready for prior approval. On Jan. 6, Nationwide Guard troops did not arrive on the scene for a number of hours.
“Maybe most essential, the USA Capitol Police is efficiently recruiting and coaching new cops at a fee that may, within the subsequent a number of months, put us above our pre-pandemic and pre-January 6 staffing ranges,” Manger mentioned.
In complete, the division has applied over 100 developments.
“The present risk local weather, notably in opposition to elected officers, would require continued and heightened vigilance. We’ll do all the pieces attainable to meet our mission of defending the Members of Congress, the Capitol Complicated and the legislative course of,” Manger mentioned.
Threats in opposition to members of Congress have elevated drastically inside the final 5 years, in keeping with Capitol police. The company investigated nearly 10,000 threats in just 2021.
“With the polarized state of our nation, an assault just like the one our Division endured on January 6, 2021, could possibly be tried once more. Ought to the unthinkable occur, we might be prepared,” Manger mentioned.