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Law enforcement to ramp up DC security efforts ahead of Jan. 6 anniversary

Jan 05, 2022


Law enforcement agencies in Washington are preparing to ramp up their security efforts ahead of Thursday’s anniversary of the Capitol riots. This includes the Department of Homeland Security, Washington, D.C. Police, the U.S. Capitol Police.

“We’re aware of several events that are planned for Thursday. Most of them aren’t of much concern to us,” Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger said Tuesday. “There’s no intelligence that indicates it, that there would be any problems.” However, he did add “I’m not taking any chances.”

While the concern over organized events turning into last year’s Capitol riots is low, there’s a greater concern among law enforcement for “lone wolf attacks”. Security expert Jason Blazakis agrees.

“What does exist are those underlying grievances that individuals may harbor and I do worry that we could see repeats of like we saw in 2018, like the Robert Bauer synagogue, free of life attack, we could see an event, for instance, along the lines of the El Paso Walmart shooting,” Blazakis said. “Those kinds of grievances still exist today.”

In a Tuesday news conference, Manger said Capitol Police are “stronger and better prepared” to handle a situation like the Capitol riots. He added police have spent much of the past year working to fix “intelligence failures, operational planning failures” and “leadership failures” that happened on Jan. 6.

“Since the attack on the Capitol, there have been nearly a dozen reports offering over 100 recommendations on needed improvements and reforms,” Manger said. “To date, we have completed or addressed over 90 of those recommendations.”

One major change now allows the Capitol Police chief to call in emergency help from the National Guard. That change was included in the “Capitol Police Emergency Assistance Act of 2021,” which President Joe Biden signed into law last month.

One person who will not be marking the Jan. 6 anniversary is former President Donald Trump. He had planned to hold a press conference at his Mar-a-Lago resort but canceled the event in a Tuesday statement.

“In light of the total bias and dishonesty of the January 6th Unselect Committee of Democrats, two failed Republicans, and the Fake News Media, I am canceling the January 6th Press Conference at Mar-a-Lago on Thursday, and instead will discuss many of those important topics at my rally on Saturday, January 15th, in Arizona,” Trump wrote in the statement.