Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Republican police officer grapples with Jan. 6 during ‘Sedition Panda’ trial

By 37ci3 May14,2024

WASHINGTON — Prince George’s County Cpl. Scott Ainsworth has worked in riots before. He did so during riots in Baltimore after Freddie Gray’s death and after University of Maryland athletic events—both celebratory events and riots when students were “upset about losing to Duke.”

But he testified in court on Monday Jesse James RumsonAinsworth, the defendant accused of attacking Ainsworth outside the Capitol after storming the building Jan. 6 wearing a panda costume, said he had seen nothing like the Capitol attack during the riots that believed former President Donald Trump’s lies about 2020. Elections directly attacked the officers in the ranks of the police.

Ainsworth testified about his military service since 1988, riot training in Korea, and previous civil unrest experience, when rioters could throw objects from a distance but never intended to make direct contact with a wall of police shields.

“This is the first time any of us as riot officers have ever had a crowd do this to us,” Ainsworth said.

On Jan. 6, it “took him a few months” to understand what happened, Ainsworth testified in Rumson’s bench trial before Trump-appointed U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols.

“I’m a Republican, these are my fellow Republicans,” Ainsworth joked, noting that he’s from Oklahoma, where you’re “born a Republican.” But he said some of the Republicans in his life have nothing to do with him now that he has served on Jan. 6.

“Are you crazy?” Ainsworth recalled thinking about his fellow Republicans who supported what happened that day. “It was stupid, it wasn’t necessary.”

Jesse James Rumson holds the SA corporal's face shield with his right hand on Jan. 6, 2021, at the Capitol.
Jesse James Rumson is accused of grabbing Corporal Scott Ainsworth’s face shield with his right hand on Jan. 6, 2021, at the Capitol.US District Court for DC

It was Rumson was arrested In February 2023. At one point, his trial would have coincided with Trump’s trial Washington Court with four charges related to his attempts to remain in office despite losing the 2020 presidential election. Then the Supreme Court intervened, based on Trump’s presidential immunity argument; Now there is a trial of the former president in Washington difficult It will happen before the 2024 elections. If Trump wins, it may not happen at all. (As in his other cases, Trump pleaded not guilty).

Ainsworth’s testimony came before Rumson’s own testimony Tuesday. Ainsworth recalled arriving at the Capitol, arriving at the building for the first time, and seeing a “triage” scene on the south side of the Capitol where police and rioters were being treated for their injuries. His riot squad was brought in to assist the Metropolitan Police and their aim was to help the rioters clear the launch pad. But after encountering a “sea of ​​people” who were “very hostile” to law enforcement — rioters ordering officers to stop, others yelling at other rioters to steal police shields — Ainsworth said he and the other officers understood their original mission. a lost cause. Instead, they formed a police line on the upper west terrace, near the point of the original breach, and helped clear the Capitol grounds.

Ainsworth testified that it took “pure brute force” along with chemicals and rioters to get the crowd off the Capitol grounds that night.

rioter sedation capitol riot
A protester wearing the head of a panda costume storms the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.Retrieved by NBC News

Rumson is represented by former Florida Republican Rep. Anthony Sabatini, who ran for U.S. House in the 2022 U.S. House primary and lost to incumbent Rep. Cory Mills, R-Fla. Mills co-sponsored a bill with Marjorie Taylor Greene to impeach the federal prosecutor who oversaw the January 6 prosecutions, belonging to the Democratic member of the House January 6 Committee. “President Trump did not incite violence, he did not lead an insurgency, what he did was for the American people, and I will stand up for him,” Mills said. he said At a GOP press conference in February.

After the government rested its case Tuesday, Sabatini moved for an acquittal, but Judge Nichols found that a reasonable fact-finder could have convicted Rumson, pointing to video evidence presented by prosecutors and Ainsworth’s “highly credible” testimony.

In his testimony Tuesday, Rumson said the Trump rally before the Capitol attack was a “really happy event” and said he saw attendees climbing trees and over port-a-potties to get a better view. When Trump told them to go to the Capitol, he said he followed.

Jesse James Rumson jumped over the railing at the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
Ramson jumped over the railing at the Capitol on January 6, 2021.US District Court for DC

Rumson claimed that he believed the platform outside the Capitol set up for Joe Biden’s inauguration was being set up for the Jan. 6 events, perhaps with speakers coming out to talk about what happened during the Electoral College certification. he admits now that he realizes he was “naive”. He walked around the north side of the building and stayed just outside the first checkpoint. When another rioter broke the window with his club and broke the door of the parliament, the evidence shows that Rumson joined the crowd by jumping over the railing. But he claimed in his testimony that the crowd was invited into the building despite the chaos around him and the alarms coming from the doors. He said he thought the seats might be on a first-come, first-served basis, so he jumped the railing.

“I was excited to get in,” Rumson said on the stand. He later described being confronted by riot officers. He said it was the “first clue” that something might be wrong, along with the tear gas. He was handcuffed, but was soon caught by other rioters and taken back from the building, where other rioters uncuffed him.

Rumson claimed police used excessive force after telling them, “I’m not violent. I’m not trying to trespass,” and brought up George Washington. There are no cameras in the hallway where Rumson was originally arrested.

“I have no idea where the panda head went,” Ramson said, adding that he was “absolutely stunned” as he stepped outside the Capitol, where he displayed his wrists after his release.

He said, “Join us!” in the officers? It was just a call to unity, Rumson argued. She also said she was “cognitively impaired” at the time and doesn’t even remember a ram!” as rioters broke a window, even though prosecutors showed video evidence of him doing it. “I couldn’t bring myself to say something like that,” Rumson testified. “I think I almost parroted it.”

Ramson acknowledged contact with Ainsworth’s face shield, but claimed it was accidental contact after he was hit in the ribs. “My hand gets a little wild,” he said.

Federal prosecutors will begin cross-examining Rumson on Tuesday afternoon.

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By 37ci3

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