WASHINGTON (WJZ) — The FBI and the Metropolitan Police Department is seeking information related to the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol Wednesday. There’s a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the suspects’ arrests.
They are looking for help identifying people who instigated the violence in Washington D.C. as well as people who unlawfully entered the Capitol.
DC Police released images of some of the rioters.
Acting Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Contee said photos of the rioters were shared with area hotels, businesses and regional airport authorities.
“As we speak, we have members of the Metropolitan Police Department that are scouring the area hotels, businesses, etc. trying to identify some of these individuals that still may be taking up residence in our within our city,” Contee said during a press conference Thursday.
The FBI Washington Field Office said it is offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for planting a suspected pipe bomb found Wednesday.
#FBIWFO is seeking the public's assistance in identifying those who made unlawful entry into U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. 6. If you witnessed unlawful violent actions contact the #FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI or submit photos/videos at https://t.co/NNj84wkNJP. https://t.co/iSeA3UMeyz pic.twitter.com/TW7fma4QDE
— FBI Washington Field (@FBIWFO) January 8, 2021
As of Friday morning, Metropolitan Police said they have gotten around 17,000 tips in the case.
Since we put out images of persons of interest related to Federal Charges Pending due to Insurrection at the US Capitol, we have received approximately 17,000 tips from the public! Thank you for your assistance!!
— DC Police Department (@DCPoliceDept) January 8, 2021
Dr. Jeffrey Davis, a political science professor at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, said it’s important to track the suspects down.
“Anytime there’s an assault like this on a democratic process, a government institution or endanger officers like we saw Capitol Police be endangered, it’s important to hold those accountable,” Davis said. “Otherwise, it’s just going to keep happening.”
Davis said he believes once in custody, the suspects arrested could face much worse.
“I think this is one of the crimes that could be charged here, and that doesn’t just criminalize the attempt to overthrow the government, it also criminalizes delaying the execution of federal law by force or taking possession of the federal property by force, and it seems to be clear that took place,” he said.
A violent mob stormed the Capitol just before 3 p.m. while lawmakers were working to affirm the results of the U.S. presidential election. The group of Trump supporters was there for a “Save America” rally. It was just hours after President Donald Trump addressed a crowd of protesters at the Ellipse.
“The violence and destruction of property at the U.S. Capitol building yesterday showed a blatant and appalling disregard for our institutions of government and the orderly administration of the democratic process,” said FBI Director Christopher Wray. “As we’ve said consistently, we do not tolerate violent agitators and extremists who use the guise of First Amendment-protected activity to incite violence and wreak havoc. Such behavior betrays the values of our democracy. Make no mistake: With our partners, we will hold accountable those who participated in yesterday’s siege of the Capitol.”
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According to a press release from the FBI, they are “accepting tips and digital media depicting rioting and violence in the U.S. Capitol Building and surrounding area in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021.”
“If you have witnessed unlawful violent actions, we urge you to submit any information, photos, or videos that could be relevant at fbi.gov/USCapitol,” the press release stated. “Please use this form to submit any images, videos, or other multimedia files you have related to possible violations of federal law committed. Our goal is to preserve the public’s constitutional right to protest by protecting everyone from violence and other criminal activity.”
Those who wish to report information to the FBI can also call 1-800-CALL-FBI to verbally report tips and/or information related to this investigation. You can also call MPD at 202-727-9099 or text them at 50411. Information can be provided anonymously.
This story was first published on January 7, 2021.