Senior US Capitol security officials have apologised for “failings” during the deadly attack on the Capitol building by supporters of former-president Donald Trump in a bid to halt the validation of Joe Biden’s election win.
Addressing the House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday, the officials specifically acknowledged several missteps, which they said contributed to the chaos and bloodshed of Wednesday, January 6. They included conflicting intelligence, inadequate preparation and insufficient mobilisation of partner agencies.
They told the Committee that there was the urgent need for improving accountability systems and communications structures within the security apparatus.
“I am here to offer my sincerest apologies on behalf of the department,” said Yolanda Pittman, the acting chief of Capitol Police.
“The department failed to meet its own high standards as well as yours,” the police chief admitted, adding that officers did not have enough riot gear and other equipment to deal with the riotous mob.
About one dozen officials from agencies including the FBI, National Guard, Justice Department and US Capitol Police briefed House appropriators who are investigating the bloody riots that resulted in the deaths of seven people, including two Capitol police officers.
Afterwards, Democratic Representative Tim Ryan told reporters that police officers guarding the Capitol had been ordered not to use lethal force against the angry mob that pushed its way into the Capitol to commit violent acts and damage the historic building.
While the US Congress has agreed to review the budget for the Capitol’s security, a state of heightened security has remained in Washington DC in the weeks since the mob attack.