How law enforcement and internet detectives are identifying the Capitol rioters.
Capitol Police may have allowed nearly every member of a mob of pro-Trump rioters to enter, vandalize, and leave the Capitol building scot-free, but internet sleuths and official investigators are determined to hold them accountable.
After insurrectionists crashed through barriers surrounding Capitol Hill, overwhelmed police, rampaged through the Capitol building, and left dozens injured and four dead, there were relatively few arrests, and many people were allowed to simply walk out. There were few consequences then — only about a dozen of the hundreds of invaders were arrested at the scene — but that’s very likely to change in the days and weeks to come. Law enforcement and civilians alike are attempting to identify those who allegedly participated. Thanks to the brazenness of many members of the mob, there’s plenty of evidence at their disposal.
Many participants willingly — and quite happily — posed for photos and videos at the scene, or boasted of their exploits on social media and verified livestream accounts during or shortly after the melee, even though many of their actions may well be serious crimes. Apparently believing they weren’t doing anything wrong or that law enforcement wouldn’t go after them for their actions, the Trump supporters paraded in front of cameras wearing distinct (and thus easily recognizable) costumes and, in some cases, even ID badges.
In short, those who stormed the Capitol didn’t leave social media breadcrumbs for law enforcement to follow to their front doors — they left entire loaves of bread.