Ex-Security Officials on Duty in Riot Are Summoned Before Senate

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The former officials who were in charge of security at the Capitol when a mob overwhelmed police and stormed the building on Jan. 6 will testify publicly before two Senate committees next week, as Congress seeks answers on what went wrong.

Former Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, former Senate Sergeant-At-Arms Michael Stenger and former House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving, all of whom resigned in the aftermath of the siege, as well as D.C. Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Contee will answer questions at a joint hearing Feb. 23 of the committees on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and Rules and Administration.

The focus will be to hear from those responsible for security forces that were overwhelmed when “a criminal mob was able to breach the Capitol complex,” according to Tuesday’s hearing announcement from the panels.

The hearing comes as Congress examines the lack of preparation for a planned rally of Donald Trump‘s supporters that turned violent. After the Senate voted Saturday to acquit the former president of the House’s charge that he incited the insurrection, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she would move forward with legislation to create an independent commission to investigate the attack.

The Tuesday announcement for the hearing came from the Senate panels’ chairs and ranking members: Michigan Democrat Gary Peters, Ohio Republican Rob Portman, Minnesota Democrat Amy Klobuchar and Missouri Republican Roy Blunt.

The plan for next week’s hearing follows an earlier bipartisan request for information from 22 agencies and departments about intelligence gathered before Jan. 6 and details about the security response.

The Capitol Police force is still being roiled by the attack. On Monday, the department’s union said officers took a vote of no confidence against top department leaders. The force is still grappling with the impact of the Jan. 6 attack that killed one officer, led to two officer suicides and injured 140 Capitol and Metropolitan Police officers.

The U.S. Capitol Police Labor Committee said 92% of officers said they have no confidence in Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman, who took over after Sund resigned.

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