Charges against police officers, public safety workers and military veterans in the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol have reignited concerns among lawmakers and law enforcement officials about violent extremists infiltrating government agencies.
Out of 324 arrests in the Capitol riot so far, 43 are current or former first responders or military veterans, according to USA TODAY analysis. At least four police officers and three former officers face federal charges. Two have been fired, one resigned and one was suspended without pay. Each of the officers charged has either pleaded not guilty or not yet been arraigned.
The alleged participation of public safety officials who have sworn to uphold the Constitution has led lawmakers to sound the alarm.
“A street alliance among right-wing paramilitary forces, law enforcement and demagogic politicians has been a hallmark of fascism for a century, so the involvement of multiple law enforcement officers from across the country in waging the Jan. 6th insurrection against the Capitol and the Congress is a warning sign of danger for our democracy,” Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., told USA TODAY. “Off-duty cops beating up on-duty cops to overthrow an election is a nightmare scenario for America.” [Continue reading…]