Riot gear, training probed at Capitol riot hearing

Senators probing the recent attack on U.S. Capitol heard testimony on training and equipping the Capitol Police as key security officials testified publicly for the first time Tuesday. (Feb. 23)

Video Transcript

ROB PORTMAN: We've received information that, prior to January 6, Capitol police officers were not trained on how to respond to an infiltration of the Capitol building. Is that correct, Mr. Sund?

STEVEN SUND: When you talk about infiltration, you're talking about a large insurrection like we saw on January 6? No.

ROB PORTMAN: Are all Capitol police officers outfitted with riot gear?

STEVEN SUND: No, they are not, sir.

ROB PORTMAN: They're not. And-- and why are they not?

STEVEN SUND: We outfit a number of our-- we have seven [? CDU ?] platoons that we can activate. Four of those platoons-- it's 40 people in a platoon-- are activated to what we call the level one, the full [? CDU ?] gear and equipment. It requires extensive cost, extensive training to keep that and keep and maintain that level for us. A number of our officers are posted in interior posts, screening posts, things like that where, you know, that gear wouldn't do them any-- you know, wouldn't provide them any support.

So we have determined, up till January 6, that that number of [? CDU ?] platoons had sufficed for all the demonstrations that we had been dealing with on Capitol grounds.

ROB PORTMAN: Yeah, Mr. Sund, I would just say, you know, obviously, those officers who you say had interior posts needed it that day. So it's not accurate to say they didn't need it.

Yeah, I think the bottom line here is that, unfortunately, our officers were not given the proper training with regard to infiltration of the building or the complex, with regard to dealing with civil disturbance. And they didn't have the equipment necessary to push back and, most importantly, to protect themselves.