One bizarre story that has emerged from the events of Jan. 6, 2021, features a now-suspended U.S. Capitol Police officer who was caught on camera wearing a Make America Great Again hat and leading his fellow officers out of the Capitol and through the protesters.
Adding to the mystery is a man dressed in plain clothes who was helping the officer had flashed a badge or credentials of some type to him.
Documentary filmmaker Ford Fischer tweeted Thursday, “After a fresh, close look at my January 6 footage, I discovered something in the chaos I didn’t know I captured: On the Capitol East side, Capitol Police Lieutenant Tarik Khalid Johnson is in my footage wearing a MAGA hat and shouting into a bullhorn.”
Thread: After a fresh, close look at my January 6 footage, I discovered something in the chaos I didn’t know I captured:
On the Capitol East side, Capitol Police Lieutenant Tarik Khalid Johnson is in my footage wearing a MAGA hat and shouting into a bullhorn. pic.twitter.com/XYuGFEXf3l
— Ford Fischer (@FordFischer) August 18, 2022
Fischer also shared footage of Johnson in the MAGA cap entering the Capitol with the help of some men the documentarian identified as Oath Keepers.
In my subsequent shot, Capitol Police Lieutenant Tarik Khalid Johnson can be seen wearing a MAGA cap and yelling into a bullhorn while leading several officers out of the building, followed by protesters. pic.twitter.com/zE1Uzi2ddu
— Ford Fischer (@FordFischer) August 18, 2022
Fischer shared more video from a different angle showing Johnson still wearing his MAGA hat and coming down the east Capitol steps unmolested by the protesters. In one man can be seen telling each officer as they walked by.
I hadn’t seen this angle before, but helmet-camera footage by @stephenehorn also shows the USCP Lieutenant coming down the East steps still wearing the MAGA hat after the apparent extraction mission he recruited Oathkeepers for. https://t.co/jbYeZrIXpU
— Ford Fischer (@FordFischer) August 19, 2022
In a separate video shot by filmmaker Rico La Starza, Johnson can be seen asking these same men for their help extricating more than a dozen Capitol Police officers, out of the Capitol.
“We’re getting beat up,” Johnson explains to the men.
“If you guys could help me distract these people, I’d appreciate it,” Johnson says to one man, who wasn’t identified in the video. “I need to get the other officers out. …They’re scared.”
Being scared hardly seems a good reason to be taking officers away from their post.
“I can help,” the man responded to Johnson’s request, and then flashed what appeared to be a badge or credential, The Wall Street Journal reported.
In January, GOP Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas questioned FBI Assistant Executive Director Jill Sanborn, appearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, whether FBI agents or informants actively participated in the events of Jan. 6.
“Sir, I’m sure you can appreciate that I can’t go into the specifics of sources and methods,” Sanborn responded.
In other words, she could not confirm or deny the FBI’s presence. So potentially the man with the badge Johnson spoke with was FBI or with some other law enforcement agency.
Later in the La Starza video, around the 4:14 mark, Johnson and the bearded man in the tan jacket and hat who volunteered to help him on the rescue mission are seen leading about 15 officers dressed in riot gear out of the Capitol.
Why Johnson would be leading them away from apparently guarding an entrance is a bit of a mystery.
The Capitol Police suspended Johnson days after the incursion, according to the Journal.
“Johnson has told fellow officers that he put on the cap in an effort to win the trust of a handful of protesters whose help he enlisted to push his way through the crowd and mount a rescue of officers trapped and in danger inside the Capitol, according to one of the colleagues,” the news outlet said.
In their recently released documentary film “The Real Story of January 6,” investigative journalist Joshua Philipp with the Epoch Times delves into the security failures at the Capitol on Jan. 6, as well as some of the violence protesters received at the hands of law enforcement.
Victoria White, from Rochester, Minnesota, is one of the protesters featured in the film.
A clip of White from the documentary aired on the Christian commentary program “Flashpoint” Thursday.
White ended up being trapped against one of the tunnel walls into the Capitol and a DC Metropolitan Police officer allegedly can be seen beating her with a metal baton dozens of times.
“When the first blow came to my head by metal baton, it was really bad,” she said. “And I remember trying to keep myself up because I was scared I would be trampled.”
KAAL-TV reported that White filed a civil lawsuit in January, alleging police brutality.
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White’s court filing states she “did not harm, threaten, or pose any threat to any federal or state agent while exercising her First Amendment and other rights” and that she was “beaten with a metal baton approximately 35 times and punched in the face five times at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, by a Metropolitan Police Officer.”
One thing that sticks out from watching Fischer’s and La Starza’s Jan. 6 footage from outside the Capitol is that pretty much everyone shown appeared to be peacefully protesting. One woman in the La Starza video, dressed in patriotic “USA” garb, even appears to be hugging each riot officer and thanking them for their service as they exit the Capitol.
Of course, some people did engage in violence on that day and should be held accountable. The Jan. 6 committee and media outlets have aired plenty of that footage.
However, the examples of MAGA hat-wearing officer Johnson being able to safely leave with over a dozen officers and White’s beating, allegedly at the hands of a police officer, run counter to the whole “insurrection” narrative.
This video footage demonstrates that the entirety of what happened on Jan. 6 is not nearly as cut and dried as the Jan. 6 committee would like us to believe.