Attorney General Merrick Garland reassured the nation in a speech that the Department of Justice is deep into its investigation of the domestic terrorist attack on our Capitol a year ago today. He reminded the public that this investigation is historical in scope and nature, “The circumstances we face are not normal.”
He explained how they prosecute large criminal cases — by building a pyramid of guilt from the stooges who got swept up in the madness and ended up inside the Capitol to those who coordinated and plotted at the top. They are charging the lesser crimes first to build up bigger cases for later and free up resources that they’ll need to take on more powerful people. “We build investigations by laying a foundation. We resolve more straightforward cases first because they provide the evidentiary foundation for more complex cases.”
He summarized what they have done so far — arrested and charged more than 725 defendants in nearly all 50 states and DC, issued over 5,000 subpoenas and search warrants, seized approximately 2,000 devices, poured through over 20,000 hours of video footage, and searched through an estimated 15 terabytes of data.
He reminded people that justice is slow because they have to get it right, there is an overwhelming amount of evidence to go through, and in America we don’t rush to judgement. Everybody gets due process. “In circumstances like January 6, a full accounting does not suddenly materialize. To ensure that all those criminally responsible are held accountable, we must collect the evidence. We follow the physical evidence, we follow the digital evidence, we follow the money.”
He assured the public that everybody involved will be brought to justice. “The actions we have taken thus far will not be our last.”
He tied the attack on the Capitol to a conspiracy that the election was stolen long before the attack, voting rights, and domestic terrorism. “We will defend our democratic institutions from attack, we will protect those who serve the public from violence, we will protect the cornerstone of our democracy — the right to every eligible citizen to cast a vote that counts.”
He acknowledged that domestic terrorist threats have been ongoing all year towards cops, teachers, legislators, school board members, election officials, flight crews, journalists, prosecutors, judges, and many more and that they’re starting to become normalized which is dangerous to public safety and democracy.
He invoked the Civil War and Watergate. What we’re living through right now is so significant that the future of the country and the world depends on how it is resolved.
He warned that the investigation will take as long as necessary. “The Justice Department remains committed to holding all January 6 perpetrators, at any level, accountable under law — whether they were present that day or were otherwise criminally responsible for the assault on our democracy. We will follow the facts wherever they lead.”
Former President Jimmy Carter has a warning for the country — “We are at genuine risk of civil conflict and losing our precious democracy…….I now fear that what we have fought so hard to achieve globally — the right to free, fair elections, unhindered by strongman politicians who seek nothing more than to grow their own power — has become dangerously fragile at home.”
A year ago today we were attacked from within. This is going to be a hard day for a lot of people.
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