Seven Capitol Police officers are suing Donald Trump for his role in the January 6 insurrection. The lawsuit, filed today in the US District Court for the District of Columbia, alleges President Trump engaged in conspiracy to to prevent Congress from certifying the 2020 election; propagated the false idea of widespread fraud in the election; “encouraged the use of force, intimidation, and threats;” and “incited violence against members of Congress and the law enforcement officers whose job it was to protect them.” The complaint also alleges that, “because of Defendants’ unlawful actions, Plaintiffs were violently assaulted, spat on, tear-gassed, bear-sprayed, subjected to racial slurs and epithets, and put in fear for their lives. Plaintiffs’ injuries, which Defendants caused, persist to this day.”
Though similar lawsuits have been filed in recent months, this suit’s list of defendants—four organizations, 20 individuals, and 10 John Does—is more comprehensive than the ones preceding it, and it’s the first suit to allege that Trump worked in tandem with said defendants to orchestrate the January 6 attack. The defendants are a mix of notorious individuals like the Proud Boys’ Enrique Tarrio and Trump loyalist Roger Stone, and far-right organizations like the Oath Keepers and Stop the Steal.
The seven plaintiffs are all Capitol Police officers who were forced to engage in hand-to-hand combat with rioters on January 6; they have 150 years of experience between them. “On Jan. 6 we tried to stop people from breaking the law and destroying our democracy,” the officers said in a joint statement. “Since then our jobs and those of our colleagues have become infinitely more dangerous. 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 civil suit’s counts include conspiracy to interfere with civil rights, assault, battery, and negligence.