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Police union: Over 140 officers injured in Capitol siege

“The officers are angry, and I don’t blame them,” said the Capitol Police union chairman

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AP Photo/Julio Cortez

By Suzie Ziegler

WASHINGTON — The physical toll of the Jan. 6 attack at the U.S. Capitol continues to grow for law enforcement. According to The Washington Post, about 140 officers were injured in the violent siege.

“I have officers who were not issued helmets prior to the attack who have sustained head injuries,” said the Capitol Police officer’s union chairman, Gus Papathanasiou, in a statement Wednesday. “One officer has two cracked ribs and two smashed spinal discs and another was stabbed with a metal fence stake, to name some of the injuries.”

According to The Post, 65 D.C. police officers suffered concussions, swollen ankles and wrists, bruises, and irritated lungs from pepper spray. Officers were pushed down stairs, trampled and punched. 81 Capitol police officers were assaulted during the siege, but the extent of their injuries was not detailed in reports.

“The officers are angry, and I don’t blame them. The entire executive team failed us, and they must be held accountable,” he said. “Their inaction cost one officer his life, and we have almost 140 responding officers injured. They have a lot to atone for.”

The union chairman also said that 38 Capitol Police employees have tested positive for COVID-19 since the attack. Almost all of them had responded to the riot.

Three officers lost their lives amid the aftermath of the attack. U.S. Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick died from injuries sustained during the siege and two others died by suicide in the weeks after: D.C. Police Officer Jeffrey Smith and U.S. Capitol Police Officer Howard Liebengood.