The Capitol Police were warned that something big was coming for the Jan. 6 event for President Donald Trump, but they ignored those warnings, NBC News explained.
The report explained that the FBI and NYPD were hearing about threats ahead of Trump's "stop the steal" rally ahead of the Electoral College count. "The FBI even visited more than a dozen extremists already under investigation to urge them not to travel to Washington," senior law enforcement officials said.
Newsweek reported last week that officials from the FBI, the Secret Service, Homeland Security, the District of Columbia government, the Pentagon, the National Guard, and the Joint Task Force–National Capital Region all knew what was coming from the Trump supporters. Somehow, however, the Capitol Police missed the memo.
"Social media is just part of a full intelligence picture, and while there was First Amendment-protected activity on social media to include some people making threats, to this point, investigators have not found that there was an organized plot to access the Capitol," a senior FBI official told NBC News.
Members of the Capitol Police were filmed opening gates so Trump insurrectionists could enter the Capitol and some were even filmed taking selfies with some of the rioters. Evidence is growing that shows the plots and plans of many extremists were broadcast online, begging the question: why weren't the FBI and Department of Homeland Security prepared for the riot. In the case of the FBI, officers reached out to the Capitol Police offering assistance during the riot but were rebuffed.
The Capitol Police Chief has submitted his resignation.
"The failure of the Capitol Police to anticipate, prevent and respond to the violence is baffling and appalling," wrote Georgetown Professor Rosa Brooks on Friday. "But in many ways, it's a direct consequence of the way the police agency that protects the legislative branch is organized, with far too little accountability or diversity, jumbled oversight, and too many opportunities for politics to creep into its mission."
There is no oversight for the Capitol Police except for Congress, which explains why the policing evolves to reflect the desires of elected members. Give the Capitol is a federal institution, the best course of action would probably be to put the Capitol Police under the oversight of the Secret Service or FBI.