Reprinted with permission from American Independent
Several police officers across the country are now facing federal charges for allegedly taking part in the violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., that left five people dead.
On Wednesday, Jacob Fracker and Thomas Robertson, officers with the Rocky Mount Police Department in Virginia, were arrested on two federal charges, knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority, and violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds, according to a criminal complaint.
"The defendants Thomas Robertson and Jacob Fracker were photographed in the Capitol Building making an obscene statement in front of a statute of John Stark," The U.S. attorney's office in D.C. alleged in a statement of facts, noting that they were off-duty.
The court document cited their ensuing social media posts, in which Robertson was quoted saying, "CNN and the Left are just mad because we actually attacked the government who is the problem and not some random small business ... The right IN ONE DAY took the f***** U.S. Capitol. Keep poking us."
Fracker, in a since-deleted Facebook post, wrote, "Lol to anyone who's possibly concerned about the picture of me going around... Sorry I hate freedom? …Not like I did anything illegal…y'all do what you feel you need to…" according to the document.
Fracker is a corporal in the Virginia National Guard, while Robertson is an Army veteran who served five years, according to The Daily Beast.
A third officer from the Houston Police Department also faces a "high probability" of federal charges for his alleged participation in the Capitol riot, according to Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo.
"There's a high probability this individual will be charged with federal charges, and rightfully so," saidAcevedo, telling a local ABC affiliate that the officer is an 18-year veteran of the police department without any disciplinary issues.
A local Houston affiliate said their sources identified the officer as Tam Dinh Pham, but the American Independent Foundation has not independently verified his identity.
Acevedo has also not released his name, but announced that the officer had resigned on Thursday morning.
"The @houstonpolice officer in question tendered his resignation this morning. The Department will release his name upon the conclusion of our joint ongoing criminal investigation with @FBI and @TheJusticeDept," Acevedo tweeted Thursday.
Across the country, other police officers are being investigated or have been suspended for allegedly taking part in the mob. Twenty-eight officers from 12 states attended the rally just before last Wednesday's attack at the Capitol, according to the Appeal.
In Maryland, for instance, an officer with the Anne Arundel County Police Department was suspendedwith pay while under investigation for their involvement in the Capitol insurrection.
In Washington state, the Seattle Police Department placed on administrative leave two officers who attended the rally prior to the riot.
Officials continue to look into whether other law enforcement officers or military members were involved, as well as whether there was any coordination prior to the insurrection.
U.S. Capitol Police Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman announced on Monday that "several USCP officers have already been suspended pending the outcome of their investigations."
Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) said separately on Monday that two Capitol police officers had been suspended, one of whom had directed people around the building during the attacks.
"We have a couple Capitol Police we talked about before with taking selfies, and another Capitol Police evidently put on a MAGA hat. They have been suspended," said Ryan in a virtual press conference.
As many as 17 Capitol police officers are being investigated currently, a House aid told CNN.
Members of the military may have also been involved in the attack.
The Army is investigating Capt. Emily Rainey, an active-duty Army Special Forces officer, for her alleged presence and actions at the Capitol last Wednesday, according to Fort Bragg, North Carolina's Maj. Dan Lessard, spokesperson for the 1st Special Forces Command (Airborne).
As the Military Times noted, Defense Department officials are unsure of how many troops may have been at the Capitol that day, but clarified that "investigations into service members fall under the services" and any investigations into retired or former service members would be conducted by the Justice Department.
Meanwhile, some Democratic lawmakers said evidence suggested Capitol Police may have aided and abetted the Capitol attack.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.
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