Testimony at Tuesday’s hearing by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s special committee to review the violence at the Capitol on Jan. 6 quickly devolved into political talking points.
That would be use of the long debunked claim that officer Brian Sicknick of the Capitol police died “in the line of duty.”
The Washington Examiner said that “evidence-free claim” reemerged in a claim from Rep. Bennie Thompson, a Mississippi Democrat appointed to lead the committee, that “seven people lost their lives” in the events.
That would appear to include Sicknick, two officers who died by suicide in subsequent days, two protesters who had heart attacks, another death from suspected drug overdose and the death of an unarmed protester who was shot and killed by a police officer.
The report said the facts are that Sicknick, 42, died the day after responding to the riot, which happened as members of Congress were voting to affirm Joe Biden as president.
News outlets falsely claimed Sicknick was beaten with a fire extinguisher, but the medical examiner concluded Sicknick suffered two strokes and that his death was from “natural” causes.
After Thompson’s claim, Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn perpetuated the misinformation in his remarks.
“I’d like to take a moment of my time to ask for a moment of silence for my fallen colleague, Officer Brian Sicknick, who died from injuries he sustained in the line of duty defending the Capitol of our beloved democracy,” Dunn claimed.
The only person actually killed during the events was Ashli Babbitt, a 35-year-old Air Force vet and Trump supporter who was shot and killed by a Capitol police officer whose name still hasn’t been officially released.
Sicknick’s death, however, was from two strokes, not the violence, the medical examiner confirmed.
“The medical examiner said Sicknick was sprayed with a chemical substance at about 2:20 p.m. on Jan. 6, collapsed at the Capitol at about 10 p.m., and was taken to a local hospital. He died at about 9:30 p.m. on Jan. 7,” the Examiner confirmed.
Officials in Washington – ever since the events – claimed Sicknick was “injured while physically engaging with protesters.”
Metropolitan Police Officer Jeffrey Smith and Capitol Police Officer Howard Liebengood both died by suicide days after the events.
The New York Times, at the time, had perpetuated the story about Sicknick, claiming he was beaten, then died hours later, and that portrayal of events even made it into the impeachment process Democrats immediately launched against President Trump, the second time they failed in their agenda to remove him from office.
The mischaracterization of Sicknick’s death even has been spread by Biden, who claimed he died while “protecting the Capitol.”
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