Rioting in the Capitol

Hundreds of President Trump’s supporters who gathered in Washington to protest the election of President-elect Joe Biden stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday in what amounted to an attempted coup that they hoped would overturn Trump’s election defeat. By the day’s end Wednesday, four people were dead: one from gunfire and three from medical emergencies.

The violent scene — much of it incited by the president’s incendiary language — was like no other in modern American history, bringing to a sudden halt the congressional certification of Biden’s electoral victory. Hours later, after law enforcement and D.C. National Guard members cleared rioters from the Capitol, lawmakers returned to certify Biden’s win.

D.C. police identified three people who died at the U.S. Capitol Wednesday of presumed medical emergencies during the mob takeover of the building as a 34-year-old from Georgia, a 50-year-old from Pennsylvania and a 55-year-old from Alabama.

Crews began erecting tall black fences around the perimeter of the Capitol grounds just after 10:30 a.m. Thursday. Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy said military personnel were erecting a seven-foot-tall “nonscalable” fence around the entire Capitol. He said the fence would remain in place for at least 30 days.

Capitol Police Chief Steven A. Sund made his first public remarks Thursday morning on his agency’s response to the riot, saying police had ” a robust plan established” to deal with protesters and did not acknowledge any deficiencies in the police performance, even after a mob overwhelmed the Capitol.

D.C. police said they arrested 69 people from at least 20 states and the District from Wednesday afternoon through early Thursday, most on curfew and unlawful entry charges. That brings to at least 79 the number of people arrested by D.C. police since Tuesday afternoon. Capitol Police said that agency arrested 14 others.