National Security

Capitol Police whistleblower accuses leadership of failures on Jan. 6

A former high-ranking official from the U.S. Capitol Police accused two other senior officials of mishandling the events of Jan. 6 in a letter to lawmakers. 

In a letter first obtained by Politico sent to congressional leaders, an anonymous whistleblower makes claims against Sean Gallagher, the Capitol Police’s acting chief of uniformed operations, and Yogananda Pittman, its assistant chief of police for protective and intelligence operations. 

Specifically, the whistleblower accused Gallagher and Pittman of inadequate action on Jan. 6 and of lying to Congress. 

“The truth may be valued less than politics by many members of the congressional community to include those that have made decisions about the leadership of the USCP post January 6th, but I believe the truth still matters to real people and certainly the men and women of the U.S. Capitol Police,” the whistleblower said in the letter. 

The whistleblower, whom Politico identifies as a man who was also a senior official on duty on Jan. 6, claimed that Pittman lied to Congress about an intelligence report to Capitol Police before the incident.  

In April, Pittman said that a group of senior officials were aware of the report preceding the attack, but the whistleblower alleged this was inaccurate and added that the report was never distributed to command staff, according to Politico. 

The letter also claimed other “game changing information” was never distributed, including information that the groups with demonstration permits around the Capitol on Jan. 6 were “all facades for Stop the Steal,” a conspiracy movement that alleged the election was stolen from Trump.

The whistleblower also wrote that he was in the Capitol Police’s Command Center with Pittman and Gallagher during the attack but said the two officials did little to attempt to control the riot. 

“What I observed was them mostly sitting there, blankly looking at the TV screens showing real time footage of officers and officials fighting for the Congress and their lives,” the whistleblower wrote.

He added that the pair “did not try to help or assist as officers and officials were literally fighting for each other, their lives and the Congress.”

“It is immensely embarrassing to the congressional leadership and staff that they selected the two individuals most responsible for the 6th to lead the Department after the 6th,” he said in his letter. “Especially since some entity selected them without any investigation. To hold them accountable would require this same group to admit they were wrong.”

A lot has changed since January 6. Although there is more work to do, many of the problems described in the letter have been addressed,” the Capitol Police said in a statement in response to the letter, per Politico. 

Apart from the claims against Gallagher and Pittman, the letter also alleges that lawmakers “purposefully failed” to be truthful with police officers who worked to protect them during the riot.

The Hill has reached out to the Capitol Police for more information. 


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