The Capitol Police rebel against the DOJ's failure to prosecute the 'Colbert Nine'
On Monday, the Department of Justice announced that it would not prosecute the nine Stephen Colbert employees (the "Colbert Nine") who had been wandering around the Capitol building unescorted. This was a huge slap in the face to every single January 6 defendant who was imprisoned and prosecuted for "parading" or otherwise trespassing in the Capitol. By Wednesday, perhaps tired of looking like weaklings and fools since January 6, the Capitol Police pushed back, making it plain that the DOJ misleadingly described what the Colbert Nine had done, which was pretty darn egregious and very illegal. I doubt the DOJ cares, but the facts are still interesting.
On January 6, people who were probably agents provocateurs from both Antifa and federal law enforcement (a) urged attendees at the Trump rally to enter the Capitol building and (b) deliberately removed all fencing and signage that would have alerted people to the fact that the grounds and building were off limits.
Additionally, for many (perhaps the majority) of those who entered the building, the Capitol Police were standing at the doors, welcoming people in. These same police periodically appeared on TV for the next year and a half, weeping about their trauma. They were an unimpressive crew.
And of course, the FBI tracked down every single granny who walked unwittingly through the Capitol, and the DOJ went after these people with avenging fury. When leftists try to deliberately burn the White House, breach the Supreme Court's doors, or storm the Capitol, it's a big "meh." But when conservatives do much less than that...well, it suddenly arises to the level of a "capital" crime (pun intended).
Image by Andrea Widburg.
Just to prove once again that the Department of Justice has a double-standard, the rules applied to the January 6 defendants went out the door when the Colbert Nine were arrested for trespassing in the Capitol. They were immediately released, rather than denied bail (as is the case for innumerable January 6 defendants). Then, this past Monday, the Department of Justice announced that it wouldn't prosecute the Colbert Nine because they really hadn't done anything wrong. They'd been invited into the Capitol, so they couldn't be blamed for wandering around:
U.S. Attorney for D.C. says they would not have been able to secure convictions for Late Show staffers arrested for unlawful entry at the House office buildings and confirms they're declining to prosecute.— Andrew Solender (@AndrewSolender) July 18, 2022
Story TK pic.twitter.com/43Ygy2RR6l
The Capitol Police, possibly tired of looking feckless and traitorous, finally pushed back:
No one is more critical of Capitol Police than I am—so this is a stunningly honest account of Colbert’s unpunished insurrectionist. Contrary to previous reports, they unlawfully entered THREE Capitol buildings, harassed/threatened GOP lawmakers, and… pic.twitter.com/xOsWmdO8HE— Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) July 20, 2022
The statement is addressed to Rep. Rodney Davis and Rep. Jim Jordan, who had asked about the incident with the Colbert employees. It's a bit hard to read, but here's the gist:
The Colbert employees, despite being warned about their conduct, were wandering unaccompanied through the Capitol, making a ruckus and attempting to harass conservative members of Congress. While it was true that congressional staffers had initially allowed them in, the staffers had then abandoned them to roam about. It also turned out that Colbert's employees had learned in advance that they were not allowed to roam through the building.
In other words, just like most of the January 6 defendants, the Colbert employees had been invited into the Capitol. But then, unlike those January 6 defendants who wandered, awe-struck and peaceable, through Congress, believing they had the right to be there, Colbert's employees tried to make trouble, knowing that doing so was forbidden.
The final words of the Capitol Police's letter, over the signature of J. Thomas Manger, the chief of police, are worth noting:
It is unfortunate that despite all of the evidence the Department presented, including that the group or its leader had been told several times that they could not be in the buildings without an escort, that the U.s. Attorney's office declined to prosecute any members of the group of Unlawful Entry.
This letter confirms what conservatives have long suspected: what we are seeing played out in the Biden administration is an openly ideologically corrupt judicial system. This cannot end well.