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A former U.S. Marine and retired New York City cop is accused of attacking a Washington, D.C., police officer during the deadly Capitol riot on Jan. 6.
Per PEOPLE, Thomas Webster was allegedly captured on police bodycam carrying a large metal flagpole with a U.S. Marine Corps flag and yelling, “You f—— piece of sh–. You f—— mother——-, man.”
He then used the flagpole to attack a D.C. police officer. Webster also pinned him to the ground and punched him for about 10 seconds, according to the complaint states. In another video posted to Twitter, he is allegedly seen trying to remove the officer’s face shield and gas mask.
Thousands stormed the U.S. Capitol last month as part of a “Stop the Steal” rally. A mob of Trump supporters was filmed forcefully entering the Capitol and walking past armed Capitol police with zero resistance. Former President Trump shared a video message to his supporters shortly after the building was seized.
“I know you’re hurt. We had an election that was stolen from us,” Trump said in the video. “But you have to go home now. We have to have peace. We have to have law and order. We have to respect our great people in law and order. We don’t want anybody hurt … We will never give up. We will never concede. It will never happen. You don’t concede when there’s death involved. Our country has had enough. We will not take it anymore.”
Trump also defended the violent mob of mostly white conservatives. “These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long. Go home with love & in peace. Remember this day forever!” he said in a tweet that was later deleted by Twitter. The video was also removed from the platform
Webster faces six charges, including assaulting an officer with a dangerous weapon. His lawyer, James Monroe, said during a virtual hearing on Tuesday that his client acted in self-defense after the officer punched him. Federal prosecutor Benjamin A. Gianforti said there’s no evidence showing the officer punching Webster before the assault.
“He went there as an American citizen to protest, an event that was urged on by our former president — to protest an issue that Tom felt very strongly about,” Monroe said during the hearing. “That’s protecting the Constitution.”
Webster is currently jailed and being held without bail, according to the report.