A judge ruled in favor of releasing 5 videos from Jan 6th.
Federal prosecutors on Tuesday released a new collection of Capitol surveillance videos from Jan. 6 after a judge ordered them to do so, rejecting the government’s argument that making the clips public could threaten the security of the complex.
The disclosure marks a setback for the US Capitol Police and the US attorney’s office in their efforts to control how much footage from the Capitol’s closed-circuit video (CCV) system gets out. In the latest case, prosecutors argued that revealing the location and vantage points of more cameras could help “bad actors” trying to plan some future assault on the building. A judge concluded that argument was too speculative, however, and that the public had a strong interest in seeing videos that formed the basis for a recent plea deal.
US District Chief Judge Beryl Howell ordered the videos released in response to a request from a media coalition (including BuzzFeed News) that is petitioning judges on a rolling basis for videos that prosecutors have relied on in Jan. 6 cases. Howell’s decision isn’t binding on other judges in the US District Court for the District of Columbia presiding over Capitol riot prosecutions, but it gives the media coalition a favorable ruling to point to in future fights.
The clips cover a period of about 15 minutes on Jan. 6 — between 2:25 p.m. and 2:40 p.m. — in different locations inside the Capitol. They show rioters streaming through open doors and broken windows at an entrance on the Senate side; crowds of people walking into the Crypt, standing in a large crowd, and eventually dispersing; and, finally, rioters exiting as US Capitol Police officers in riot gear gather at the Senate entrance point to stand guard as a mob that’s outside looks in through the broken windows. There is no audio. The cameras are stationed up high and at a distance, providing a wide, stable perspective on the scene.
Here is the main video that was released:
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