DOJ official explains why Jan. 6 is being investigated as act of domestic terrorism

Assistant Attorney General Matt Olsen testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday and explained why the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol by supporters of Donald Trump is being investigated as an act of terrorism.

Olsen's comments came under questioning from Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) after he announced the DOJ would form a new domestic terrorism unit.

"Is what happened on Jan. 6 domestic terrorism?" Hirono asked.

"The Department of Justice and FBI has been clear that the attacks — the events — that occurred on Jan. 6 are being investigated as an act of domestic terrorism," Olson replied.

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"And you quoted from the federal code definition of domestic terrorism, which, if I may, involves 'acts dangerous to human life, that are a violation of criminal laws,' and, in part, that are intended to 'influence the policy of government through intimidation or coercion."

"So I think it's entirely appropriate that Jan. 6 events are generally being investigated as acts of domestic terrorism," he said. "Having said that, it's important to add that in any particular case, it will depend on the actual facts and circumstances of that case, which of course are ongoing in the investigation and prosecution stages."