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Rioters break into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.
The Capitol Siege: The Cases Behind The Biggest Criminal Investigation In U.S. History
Babbitt can be seen in footage from that day, carrying a backpack and trying to breach a barricaded door. When Babbitt attempted to climb through a smashed door into the Speaker’s Lobby, Byrd fired a single shot that struck Babbitt in the left shoulder. She later died from her injuries at Washington Hospital Center.
The far-right has characterized Babbitt as a martyr, with former President Donald Trump himself saying in a statement that she was «murdered at the hands of someone who should never have pulled the trigger of his gun.»
Byrd told Holt that Trump’s statement was «disheartening.»
He said of Trump: «If he was in the room or anywhere and I’m responsible for him, I was prepared to do the same thing for him and his family.»
Babbitt, who was 35, served in the military from 2004-2008, and subsequently joined the Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard. During her service, she received the Iraq Campaign Medal. Her social media posts indicate she was a fervent supporter of Trump and a follower of QAnon, a far-right conspiracy theory.
Her ex-husband Timothy McEntee told NPR in an email in January that Babbitt was very outspoken.
«She had a personality that you either loved or hated,» he wrote. «She wasn’t apologetic about it … she was proud of it, just like she was proud of her country and proud to be an American.»
Babbitt’s husband, Aaron, told NPR in May that he plans to sue the Capitol Police, claiming the officer should have employed less-lethal force.
Capitol police officers file suit against Trump for Jan. 6 violence
Separately, a group of U.S. Capitol Police officers are attempting to hold Trump legally responsible for the violence that erupted at the Capitol on Jan. 6.
Seven officers filed a lawsuit Thursday against Trump, both in his personal capacity as well as the Trump campaign, along with more than 20 co-defendants. Those include the extremist groups the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers and individual allies of Trump like Roger Stone.
«On Jan. 6, we tried to stop people from breaking the law and destroying our democracy,» the officers said in a statement. «We want to do what we can to make sure the people who did this are held accountable and that no one can do this again.»
The lawsuit alleges Trump conspired with the organizations and individuals to propagate the lie that the presidential election was stolen from him in order to prevent Congress from certifying the results by directing his supporters to breach the Capitol.