Officer who shot, killed Ashli Babbitt won’t face charges

The Department of Justice (DOJ) will not pursue charges against the U.S. Capitol Police officer who fatally shot Ashli Babbitt during the deadly January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, officials announced Wednesday.

Officials said that federal prosecutors reviewed video footage, interviewed the officer and other witnesses, assembled evidence, and examined autopsy results, officials said of the investigation conducted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

“Based on that investigation, officials determined that there is insufficient evidence to support a criminal prosecution,” the DOJ said in a statement.

“The investigation revealed no evidence to establish that, at the time the officer fired a single shot at Ms. Babbitt, the officer did not reasonably believe that it was necessary to do so in self-defense or in defense of members of Congress,” the statement also read. The DOJ’s decision officially concludes the investigation.

Babbitt, a 14-year Air Force and Air National Guard veteran, was fatally shot by a Capitol Police officer while she and a mob were standing in the doorway leading to the House Speaker’s Lobby of the Capitol. The officer shot her as rioters attempted to smash through the door, and the chaotic moment was captured on video and quickly spread throughout social media shortly thereafter.

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She had entered the Capitol Building with other rioters on January 6 to prevent the certification of the 2020 Electoral College victory of President Joe Biden.

Babbitt is one of five people who died in or outside the Capitol that day, including Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick. Three other people died of medical emergencies.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @DouglasPBraff.