House Speaker Kevin McCarthy gave thousands of hours of surveillance video footage from the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, to Fox News host Tucker Carlson that was not released when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democrats controlled the lower chamber. In recent weeks, Carlson has been airing portions of the footage on his primetime show.
In the wake of the unseen footage, several Jan. 6 defendants have attempted to file new motions in court that they believe could help their cases.
In one case, Christopher Quaglin – a New Jersey electrician the Justice Department says is a member of the Proud Boys – filed a renewed motion for release. However, U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden denied Quaglin’s motion for release from pretrial custody, ruling he found no violations of constitutional rights at the D.C. Jail that would warrant his release.
“Quaglin was one of nine men in a multi-defendant indictment field in 2021 stemming from an hours-long assault on police defending the U.S. Capitol Building’s Lower West Terrace Tunnel on Jan. 6, 2021. Quaglin faces felony charges of assaulting police with a dangerous weapon and inflicting bodily injury on officers for allegedly attacking police with a stolen riot shield and pepper spray,” local outlet WUSA9 reported.
“As Gross noted during Tuesday’s hearing, three Republicans on the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability sent a letter to D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser last week announcing their plan to investigate the D.C. Jail’s handling of Jan. 6 detainees. The letter included the claim that Jan. 6 detainees have received ‘disparate treatment,’ including lack of access to legal resources,” the outlet added.
In another case, U.S. District Court Judge James Boasberg, an Obama appointee, rejected a request from Sara Carpenter to delay her trial over her role in the Capital riot.
The request for a delay was made in the context of first allowing the 44,000 hours of footage to be reviewed.
According to Politico, Judge Boasberg acknowledged the request is not frivolous but said the defense had not provided sufficient clarification as to why any additional footage would be considered exculpatory.
Carpenter, a former NYPD officer, is currently facing two felony charges related to her alleged involvement in the Capitol riot, Fox News noted, citing the Politico report.
Boasberg argued that reviewing Capitol and police surveillance footage from McCarthy’s office could potentially derail multiple trials scheduled in the upcoming months.
Prosecutors have stated that they have already provided Carpenter with a substantial amount of closed-circuit television footage, documenting her presence inside the Capitol building for a duration of 34 minutes, with only a few seconds unaccounted for, Fox News noted, adding that they don’t have any idea what footage McCarthy has released.
“We don’t have what the speaker has,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Cook said during the hearing, according to Politico. “In any case, there’s always the possibility some information may be out there.”
Many other defendants facing charges related to the riot, including those affiliated with the Proud Boys and accused of seditious conspiracy, have expressed concerns about how the extensive footage will impact their cases, the report said.
In response to these concerns, Republican Rep. Barry Loudermilk of Georgia, who serves as the chairman of the House Administration Committee’s oversight subcommittee, has reportedly stated that the footage captured by McCarthy’s office will be made available to defendants on a case-by-case basis to ensure that they receive due process.
Last month, McCarthy honored a pledge made to Republican holdouts during his bid for Speaker to release all of the surveillance footage, and he kept the promise by releasing it to Carlson.
Carlson has been airing new footage in recent days on his Fox News program from the riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
The chief of the U.S. Capitol Police issued a memo to his staff following the airing of previously unseen security footage by Carlson, which showed police officers appearing to stand passively as a large crowd entered the Capitol that day.
Police Chief Tom Manger condemned the comments made during the airing of the footage on Carlson’s Monday night program, stating that it was “filled with offensive and misleading conclusions” about the riot of January 6, 2021, when a group of people breached the U.S. Capitol building, causing disruptions to lawmakers who were in the process of certifying President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory.
“The program conveniently cherry-picked from the calmer moments of our 41,000 hours of video,” Manger claimed. “The commentary fails to provide context about the chaos and violence that happened before or during these less tense moments.”