"I was slipping in people’s blood": Eyewitnesses testify at Jan. 6 hearing
Two eyewitnesses to the Jan. 6 attack provided detailed testimony about what they saw and experienced during the riot to Thursday's primetime committee hearing.
Driving the news: "I was slipping in people’s blood," U.S. Capitol Police Officer Caroline Edwards, believed to be the first officer injured on Jan. 6, recounted.
- "It was carnage. It was chaos. I can’t even describe what I saw."
- The Jan. 6 committee also played a video that shows Edwards being pushed by rioters to the ground, hitting her head on the Capitol steps where she was knocked unconscious.
- Edwards suffered a concussion from the attack and experienced fainting spells for months after the insurrection, the New York Times reports.
British documentary filmmaker Nick Quested, who was following the Proud Boys right-wing extremist group, also described what he saw on Jan. 6, saying the crowd turned "from protesters, to rioters, to insurrectionists."
- "I was surprised by the size of the group, the anger and the profanity," he testified.
- Quested also described being "confused" that "a couple of hundred of Proud Boys were marching toward the Capitol" before Trump’s speech.
- "I was confused to an extent why we were walking away from the president's speech because that's what I felt we were there to cover," Quested said.
The big picture: The testimony from two eyewitnesses set the backdrop for the committee's argument that the insurrection "was a result of a coordinated, multi-step effort to overturn the results of the 2020 election and stop the transfer of power from Donald Trump to Joe Biden," Axios' Alayna Treene reports.
- The Jan. 6 committee chairs, Chair Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) and Vice Chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), tied Trump to the events of that violent day.
- "President Trump summoned the mob, assembled the mob and lit the flame of this attack," Cheney said.
- "Jan. 6 was the culmination of an attempted coup," Thompson said.
What's next: Thursday's primetime, Watergate-style hearing was the first in a series of public hearings that are scheduled for the rest of the month.
- The committee has a subsequent hearing scheduled for June 13 at 10 a.m.