The Capitol police union will move forward this week with plans to hold a no-confidence vote for the force’s top leaders in the wake of the Jan. 6 Capitol riot that left one police officer dead and 140 more injured, Fox News reports.
The union board said in a statement Tuesday it is taking “the unprecedented step after reviewing senior leadership’s handling of the January 6th insurrection.”
The no-confidence vote will target the force’s top leaders, Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman, Assistant Chief Chad Thomas, Acting Assistant Chief Sean Gallagher, and three deputy chiefs.
The union highlighted testimony given by Pittman in a closed-door meeting with the House Appropriations Committee last month. Pittman admitted the “Department knew that the January 6th event would not be like any of the previous protests held in 2020.”
“We knew that militia groups and white supremacists organizations would be attending,” Pittman told the House Appropriations Committee. “We also knew that some of these participants were intending to bring firearms and other weapons to the event.”
The vote, which will take place Thursday and Friday, comes one week after the late Officer Brian Sicknick, who allegedly died from injuries suffered during the attack, lay in honor at the Capitol Rotunda.
Union Chairman Gus Papathanasiou noted two deaths by suicide of two officers — one a Capitol police officer and another with the Metropolitan Police Department following the Capitol riot. In addition, about 140 total officers sustained injuries, some of which may never be able to return to duty, Papathanasiou added.
“The enormity of the multiple leadership failures both in leading up to the insurrection, and in the Department’s response to it, have convinced us there is no other choice,” Papathanasiou said Tuesday. “The leadership has failed us, and we have paid a terrible price.”