Lieutenant Michael Leroy Byrd revealed as cop who 'killed MAGA fan Ashli Babbitt' at Capitol riot as he's to speak out
THE police officer who allegedly shot and killed MAGA fan Ashli Babbitt during the Capitol riot has reportedly been named ahead of his first interview.
Since the January 6 insurrection, the US Capitol police officer who was filmed gunning down Trump supporter Babbitt, 35, has remained anonymous to the public.
But in an interview with Zenger News, Babbitt's family attorney, Terry Roberts, named Lieutenant Michael Leroy Byrd as the cop who killed the 35-year-old Air Force veteran.
The Capitol Police officer's name was reportedly known to US Capitol Police, congressional staffers and federal investigations; however, no one would disclose it.
“The U.S. Congress wants to protect this man. He’s got friends in high places, and they want to protect him,” Maryland attorney Roberts told the outlet.
“And they’ve done a pretty good job of it. … I don’t think it’s a proud moment for the U.S. Capitol Police or the U.S. Congress.”
The Justice For Ashli Babbitt Twitter page tweeted out a Newsweek article that also revealed Lt. Byrd's name as the triggerman.
Byrd’s attorney, Mark Schamel, did not dispute the identification to Zenger News.
“I can confirm that my client is a hero," Schamel reportedly told the outlet.
"My client justifiably used force to protect members of Congress from an imminent threat posed by violent rioters and that he shot the first rioter who breached the inner sanctum of the House of Representatives and … there is no basis in law or fact for a civil case against him or the Capitol Police."
Read our Ashli Babbitt live blog for the very latest news and updates…
Schamel added: "If the violent insurrectionist who died [Babbitt] had survived, she would have been indicted on felony charges and would have been on her way to prison with her fellow insurrectionists."
Most of the hundreds of January 6 protesters who have been formally indicted are charged with trespassing, vandalism or similar minor offenses.
According to Roberts, Byrd is a controversial figure with a record of mishandling firearms, including an incident where he left a loaded pistol in a Congressional Visitor Center bathroom.
The Maryland attorney said Byrd’s decision to fire his weapon on January 6 indicated his unfitness for duty.
“If I was a congressman, I’d be very concerned about him carrying a gun around me,” he told the outlet.
Roberts is planning a filing a wrongful death lawsuit naming both Byrd and the US Capitol Police as defendants, per Zenger.
Schamel and Roberts did not immediately respond to requests for comment from The Sun.
Babbitt, along with hundreds of Trump supporters, stormed the US Capitol on January 6 in a bid to overturn his election defeat.
Babbitt was shot in the chest during the mayhem inside the Capitol, as a video clip captured the sound of the gunshot and showed the 35-year-old crumpling to the floor and bleeding out from the neck.
After the shot was fired, a protester can be heard shouting "shots fired" as others ask the officers to "stop."
At least four people died in the riots.
Police say three others were killed in what was described as "medical emergencies"
On August 26, the police officer who fatally shot Babbitt will reveal his identity for the first time in a televised interview with NBC Nightly News.
The interview is scheduled to air on Thursday, August 26, at 6.30pm
The news comes three days after the US Capitol Police Department announced it would not discipline the officer following an internal investigation of the January 6 shooting.
The Department of Justice also said it would not pursue criminal charges against the officer.
Source: Read Full Article