A D.C. police officer who was attacked by a former New York City cop during the Capitol riot testified that he was “scared” and “in pretty bad shape” after the rioter swung a flagpole and then tackled him to the ground as the pro-Trump mob breached the barricades.
Metropolitan Police Department officer Noah Rathbun told jurors on Wednesday that police were “overwhelmed” by a “hostile” crowd at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Rathbun, who did not recall ever being on the grounds of the Capitol building before, said that it was clear the “sea of people” could easily overtake the officers protecting the building.
Former New York City police officer Thomas Webster, whose defense team concedes that he grappled with Rathbun, is attempting to convince jurors that Rathbun invited the attack. They have also claimed that Rathbun “punched” Webster after Webster pushed against a barricade. Footage from several angles shown in court shows that Rathbun struck Webster with an open hand only after Webster shoved the metal barricade into him twice. Rathbun described the contact with Webster’s face as incidental.