Lieutenant Byrd had tears in his eyes when he shot Ashli Babbitt during Capitol riots, report reveals
Lieutenant Michael Byrd, the Capitol agent who shot and killed rioter Ashli Babbitt on Jan. 6, was “nervous, tearful and appeared very upset” after shooting the Air Force veteran, according to a secret report.
More than 500 pages of DC Metropolitan Police internal documents about the deadly shooting reveal that witnesses said Babbitt was not carrying a weapon at the time and describe how Lt Byrd was shocked by the event.
Babbitt was a staunch Trump supporter who was killed when she tried to climb into the Speaker’s Lobby in front of a crowd during the riots through a shattered glass door.
A Capitol Police sergeant whose name is redacted in the report obtained by Judicial Watch through a FOIA lawsuit said Byrd was “visibly upset” afterwards, adding: “His eyes were red. He was, you could tell he was visibly upset and he just comforted him and told him, you know, we gotta get out of here,” the interview transcript reads.
Another police interviewee standing directly behind Byrd in the Speaker’s Lobby said, “Lieutenant Byrd was trembling, he said nothing…. Byrd was nervous, had tears in his eyes and seemed very upset. His voice [was] also shaky when he radioed for medical help. Lieutenant Byrd was still very upset.’
Lieutenant Michael Byrd (pictured) was ‘nervous, tearful and appeared very upset’ after Ashli Babbitt’s shooting, a report found.
Babbitt was a staunch Trump supporter who was killed when she tried to climb in front of a crowd through a shattered glass door to the Speaker’s Lobby
The internal DC Metropolitan Police documents were obtained by Judicial Watch through a FOIA lawsuit
Witnesses said Babbitt was not carrying a weapon at the time and described how Lt Byrd was shocked by the event
The documents reveal conflicting stories as to whether Byrd verbally warned Babbitt before opening fire.
A sergeant said they saw Babbitt climbing through a broken window, but did not see her holding a weapon.
The report says: ‘Sergeant [redacted] saw a white female protester climb through an open area where the window had been broken. He heard a shot and this woman fell backwards through the opening.
“The crowd on the other side of the barricaded east doors began to back off, some raising their hands. Sergeant [redacted] saw Lieutenant Byrd step back just after hearing the shot. Prior to the shot, he saw nothing in the female protester’s hands.
‘Sergeant [redacted] never went on the other side of the barricaded east door. He also didn’t know it was Lieutenant Byrd firing his gun until he spoke to him briefly after it happened. Lieutenant Byrd looked angry and said, ‘I was the one who took the shot.’
Byrd ordered him and other officers to “get on the subway” after the shooting.
The sergeant said it was his “craziest day” at the office and added, “I’m not afraid to say I was, I was scared.”
Babbitt Is Seen On The Ground Wounded After Being Shot By Capitol Police During The Capitol Riots
Another officer interviewed on Feb. 4 said he had not heard verbal orders before the shooting.
But a separate telephone interview with a witness who contacted Metro PD said he was in the House of Chambers at the time and heard “loud verbal orders” that Byrd would “shoot.”
The transcript says, “He yelled, he gave orders. Um, he said, I’ll shoot. Uh, he said some other things. I couldn’t quite understand what he was saying, but he was definitely giving, er, commands, there was no doubt about that.”
‘He [Byrd], uh, did all he could do…. He was alone, we were defending the front door and they shook it.’
The discrepancy over commando orders and claims that Babbitt had no weapon in his hands have raised questions about the murder.
Protesters in the room after Ashli Babbitt is shot by Capitol Police in the US Capitol
A sergeant said they saw Babbitt climbing through a broken window, but didn’t see her holding a weapon
Babbit died after Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol building after his January 6 rally, when he urged them to walk to Congress
After the murder, the investigators did find a ‘paraforce’ pocket knife in her pocket.
The weapon was then turned over to the DC Department of Forensic Sciences
Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, said: Fox news“This previously classified data shows that there was no good reason to shoot and kill Ashli Babbitt.
“The Biden-Garland Justice Department and the Pelosi Congress have a lot to answer for for the exaggerated abuse and cover-up of this outrageous murder of a US citizen by the US Capitol Police.”
The report comes after Donald Trump wished Babbitt a happy birthday on Monday and the Justice Department demanded Joe Biden reopen the investigation into her death.
Babbitt’s parents and husband, as well as other supporters, took part in a Texas Loves Ashli Babbitt rally on what would have been her 36th birthday in Freeport, Texas.
An officer interviewed on Feb. 4 said he had not heard verbal orders from Byrd prior to the shooting.
The US Capitol Police announced in August that the officer who shot and killed Babbitt has been acquitted of any wrongdoing
Trump called her a “truly incredible person” who lost her life “for no reason” in a roughly 2-minute video reportedly played during the event.
“It is a great honor for me to address each of you gathered today to cherish the memory of Ashli Babbitt, a truly incredible person,” Trump began.
“On that terrible day of January 6, Ashli arrived innocently at the United States Capitol. She was shot and tragically killed. Today would have been her birthday – happy birthday, Ashli. We look at you and you look down on your family and us.’
He praised her for her years of service in the United States Air Force and publicly urged the DOJ to reopen its determined investigation into her death by shooting.
Ashli Babbitt was married to Aaron, who served as a Marine from 2000 to 2005
“There was no reason Ashli should have lost her life that day. We must all demand justice for Ashli and her family. So on this solemn occasion, as we celebrate her life, we renew our call for a fair and impartial investigation into Ashli Babbitt’s death,” Trump said.
The DOJ’s investigation cleared Byrd of any wrongdoing in April. An internal investigation by the Capitol Police came to the same conclusion in August.
Byrd first revealed his identity in August during an NBC Nightly News interview.
He told host Lester Holt about the numerous death threats he and his family had received, but defended that his actions had “saved countless lives.”
Trump called Byrd a “murderer” in a statement in early August. He said he spoke to Babbitt’s widowed mother, adding that she was “killed by someone who should never have pulled the trigger on his gun.”
Babbitt’s death is a rallying point for Trump supporters who believe the election was stolen by President Biden.
Since the riots, four Capitol officers who clashed with the rioters have been killed.
Kyle DeFreytag, 26, Howard Liebengood, 51, Jeffrey Smith, 35, and Gunther Hashida, 43, all committed suicide in the months following the storming of the government building.
It leads to fear of the long-term psychological effects the riots could have on them and questions whether or not other factors were at play.