Two US Capitol officers were accused of ‘staring blankly at the TV’ instead of helping their fellow officers during the January 6 Capitol riots.
In a 16-page letter addressed to members of the House and Senate on September 28, a whistleblower excoriated the actions of assistant chief Yogananda Pittman and acting assistant-chief Sean Gallagher.
The whistleblower claimed they sat in the control room and did nothing while the Capitol was under siege and their fellow officers were injured or even killed.
‘They did not try to help or assist as officers and officials were literally fighting for each other, their lives and the Congress,’ the anonymous complainant wrote.
‘What I observed was them mostly sitting there, blankly looking at the TV screens showing real time footage of the officers and officials fighting for the Congress and their lives,’ the former department official, who said they were in the command center for much of the attack, wrote.
It also alleges that the pair didn’t share crucial intelligence about the riot, which they received the month before the siege, and would have ‘changed the paradigm of that day.’
The whistleblower, who allegedly has more than 30 years of service with the department, said the pair had not even faced any consequences for allegedly shirking their duties.
‘Their failures have been marginalized, negligibly investigated [and] categorically underreported,’ claimed the whistleblower, who said they worked at the U.S. Capitol on the day of the January 6 ‘Stop the Steal’ protests.
‘Without accountability… they have been restored to their exact same positions as if they were not responsible for the single greatest intelligence failure in the history of the US.’
The whistleblower accused Chief for Protective and Intelligence Operations Yogananda Pittman, center, and Acting Assistant Chief for Uniformed Operations Sean Gallagher, right, of not sharing vital intelligence with other police leadership and not acting to help officers once the violence began on January 6 amid the Capitol Riots
Allegedly, Assistant Chief Sean Gallagher (pictured) and Chief Yogamana Pittman didn’t share intelligence information with other members of the department, which the whistleblower wrote would have ‘changed the paradigm of that day’
The writer said that Pittman lied to Congress about a piece of intelligence received by the department in late December – that a blog called ‘thedonald.win’ posted a map of the Capitol, and that members of the forum encouraged each other to carry guns and use them to confront politicians. She is pictured testifying before the body in April
Although the letter touches on other topics contained in the Senate Judiciary Committee’s reports on the insurrection, the letter primarily takes aim at the two department leaders – and accuses some congressional leaders of ‘purposefully fail[ing]’ to tell the truth to protect that leadership.
The writer also said that Pittman lied to Congress about the information received by the department in late December – that a blog called ‘thedonald.win’ posted a map of the Capitol, and that members of the forum encouraged each other to carry guns and use them to confront politicians.
Pittman told Congress other members of the US Capitol Police department had been briefed on the forums – however, the alleged high-ranking tipster said that other officials in the department didn’t receive the intelligence report.
‘The single most important piece of intelligence information … was never shared with any members of USCP leadership,’ the whistleblower wrote, asking: ‘Why did they approve the operational plan for the 6th if they knew the intelligence?’
‘Without accountability… they have been restored to their exact same positions as if they were not responsible for the single greatest intelligence failure in the history of the US,’ the whistleblower wrote
‘They did not try to help or assist as officers and officials were literally fighting for each other, their lives and the Congress,’ said the anonymous complainant
Gallagher and Pittman allegedly had intelligence that permits acquired for that day to hold events around the Capitol were actually all obtained by Stop the Steal under the names of shell organizations. Pictured are Stop the Steal protestors on January 6
Gallagher and Pittman also had intelligence that permits acquired for that day to hold events around the Capitol were actually all obtained by Stop the Steal under the names of shell organizations.
Since the unprecedented attack on the Capitol, the department has made lightning-fast changes under scrutiny – for example, all rank-and-file officers get daily intelligence alerts sent right to their cell phones.
In a statement to CNN, the Capitol Police executive team said that ‘a lot has changed since January 6… [though] there is more work to do, many of the problems described in the letter have been addressed.
‘USCP leaders, under new Chief Tom Manger, are committed to learning from prior mistakes and protecting our brave officers, who fought valiantly on January 6, so we can continue to carry out the Department’s critical mission,’ the statement said.
‘The men and women of this Department are committed to that critical mission. Our goal is to work as a team, to move forward, and advance the work that keeps the U.S. Capitol and the people who work here safe.’
A month after the January 6 attack, both Pittman and Gallagher still among the force’s leadership, and received a vote of ‘no confidence’ from members of the department.
The vote by the department’s union was meant to express displeasure in leadership, and signified USCP officers’ deep frustrations with management.