The Congressional Police announced on Monday the results of their internal investigation into the fatal Ashli Babbitt shooting. Officials said that as part of the months-long investigation, they interviewed multiple witnesses and reviewed video and radio calls.
After investigating the shooting, federal prosecutors also cleared the police officer for any misconduct and did not disclose his name. The Congress police worried about his safety and did not release his name. The officer’s lawyer, Mark Shamel, said his client faced “many credible death threats” and other “horrible threats” and was forced to leave the house.
Fearing for his safety, the Associated Press did not reveal the official’s name.
Babbitt, a 35-year-old Air Force veteran from San Diego, was shot and killed by a police lieutenant while trying to climb into a door. She is unarmed.
The prosecutor said that Babbitt was part of the mob trying to enter the House of Representatives because the congressional police were evacuating members of Congress from the chamber. Officials used furniture to try to block the glass doors separating the corridor and the Speaker’s Hall in an attempt to stop the mob. They kept trying to break into these doors and smash the glass with flagpoles, helmets and other objects.
At the same time, Babbitt tried to climb through one of the broken glass doors. The prosecutor said that the police officer was in the Speaker’s Hall and then fired a bullet with his service weapon, which hit Babbitt in the shoulder.
The Congressional Police stated that its Office of Professional Responsibility, which handles such investigations, determined that “the police officer’s actions are lawful and consistent with departmental policies.” The officer will not face internal disciplinary action.
Officials said the policy stipulates that police officers should use lethal force only when they have reason to believe that their actions will protect human life-whether it is their own lives or other people who may be “immediately at risk of serious bodily harm.”
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