Tim Ryan: Prosecutors reviewing video of Capitol tours given by lawmakers before riot

Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanSix takeaways: What the FEC reports tell us about the midterm elections Schumer, Tim Scott lead as Senate fundraising pace heats up Here's what Congress is reading at the beach this summer MORE (D-Ohio) on Thursday said federal prosecutors in Washington, D.C., are “reviewing the footage” to see if members of Congress gave Capitol tours to rioters shortly before the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection.

Ryan, chairman of the House subcommittee with oversight of the Capitol Police, told reporters that accusations surrounding lawmakers allegedly giving "reconnaissance tours" to rioters before the attack are now "in the hands of the U.S. attorney here in D.C."

The Hill has reached out to Justice Department for comment.


Ryan told MSNBC’s Rachel MaddowRachel Anne MaddowBudowsky: How Biden can defeat COVID-19 for good Democratic group launches seven-figure ad campaign on voting rights bill GOP's attacks on Fauci at center of pandemic message MORE later that evening that he could not elaborate on the investigation.

“The U.S. attorney has the investigation going on now. I’m sure they’re looking at the footage ... so that’s in their hands now,” Ryan said. “Anybody who’s dealt with the U.S. attorney during an investigation — it’s like a black box, you don’t really know what’s going on but you know it’s happening.”

Rep. Mikie SherrillRebecca (Mikie) Michelle SherrillDemocrat unveils bill to allow only House members to serve as Speaker Six takeaways: What the FEC reports tell us about the midterm elections Moderate Democrats call for 9/11-style panel to probe COVID-19 origins MORE (D-N.J.), a former Navy pilot, said in the aftermath of the riot that she had witnessed colleagues leading people on tours of the Capitol in the days leading up to the attack, calling the walkthroughs "reconnaissance" for the siege.

Sherrill is not alone in her concerns about security at the Capitol complex in the lead-up to the assault.

A coalition of more than 30 House Democrats has called for an investigation into “suspicious” tours, saying either they or their aides witnessed “an extremely high number of outside groups in the complex, on Jan. 5, which is unusual given that public tours of the Capitol ended in March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic."


They also wrote that some of the visitors encountered by lawmakers “appeared to be associated” with the "Stop the Steal" rally that was held at the White House Ellipse the next day, when Congress was certifying President BidenJoe BidenTrump hails Arizona Senate for audit at Phoenix rally, slams governor Republicans focus tax hike opposition on capital gains change Biden on hecklers: 'This is not a Trump rally. Let 'em holler' MORE’s election victory over former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump hails Arizona Senate for audit at Phoenix rally, slams governor Arkansas governor says it's 'disappointing' vaccinations have become 'political' Watch live: Trump attends rally in Phoenix MORE.

“Members of the group that attacked the Capitol seemed to have an unusually detailed knowledge of the layout of the Capitol Complex. The presence of these groups within the Capitol Complex was indeed suspicious,” the lawmakers wrote.

Rep. Steve CohenStephen (Steve) Ira CohenOmar leads lawmakers in calling for US envoy to combat Islamophobia Trump says being impeached twice didn't change him: 'I became worse' Five big questions about the Jan. 6 select committee MORE (D-Tenn.) said that he and Rep. John YarmuthJohn Allen YarmuthDemocrats look to flip script on GOP 'defund the police' attacks Democrats hit crunch time in Biden spending fight Republican immigration proposal falls flat MORE (D-Ky.) saw first-term Rep. Lauren BoebertLauren BoebertMcConnell pushes vaccines, but GOP muddles his message GOP's Banks burnishes brand with Pelosi veto Performance or performance art? A question for voters in 2022 (and 2024) MORE (R-Colo.) giving a tour sometime between Jan. 3 and Jan. 6.

Boebert responded to Cohen’s accusation on Twitter, saying she hasn't given a Capitol tour to anyone besides family members who were in town for her swearing-in ceremony a few days earlier.

“I guess having a big family is a scandal now,” she wrote. 

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSunday shows preview: Bipartisan infrastructure talks drag on; Democrats plow ahead with Jan. 6 probe House Democrats grow frustrated as they feel ignored by Senate Yellen to Congress: Raise the debt ceiling or risk 'irreparable harm' MORE (D-Calif.) suggested that any lawmakers who are found to have assisted in the attack may be criminally charged.

Acting Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman said Thursday that security will remain tight because of intelligence that some militia groups that attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6 have threatened to "blow up" the complex when Biden delivers his State of the Union joint address to Congress. No date has been set for Biden to address Congress.