Election Integrity Protest Turns Deadly After Police Shoot Unarmed Woman

D.C. Capitol Police fatally shot a female protester in the Capitol Building early Wednesday afternoon.

D.C. Capitol Police fatally shot a female protester in the Capitol Building early Wednesday afternoon.

United States Capitol Police have identified the victim as Ashli E. Babbitt, a California native and 14-year Air force Veteran who had received the rank of senior airman.

Babbitt, 35, was killed by a senior officer inside the U.S. Capitol Building after being shot in the neck. According to multiple videos taken at the scene, it appears the shot was fired through a broken glass partition from a secure area inside the building. She was unarmed at the time.

As protesters were forcing their way toward the House Chamber where Members of Congress were sheltering in place, a sworn USCP employee discharged their service weapon, striking an adult female,” the Capitol Police said in a statement on Thursday.

Soon after the incident, multiple videos surfaced showing paramedics transporting her off the Capital Building grounds on a stretcher. Babbitt was later pronounced dead at a local hospital from the injuries she sustained.

NPR reports that Babbitt had entered active duty with the military in 2004. She then served with the Air Force reserve from 2008 to 2010, and the Air National Guard until 2016. Battitt also received the Iraq Campaign Medal, awarded to service members who served in the country of Iraq and in direct support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Her ex-husband, Timothy McEntee, wrote to NPR by email, “She saw first hand through her multiple deployments overseas how others were treated and was grateful to have the freedoms we have in America.”

She had a personality that you either loved or hated,” he wrote. “She wasn’t apologetic about it … she was proud of it, just like she was proud of her country and proud to be an American.

The officer who shot her has been placed on administrative leave as authorities are currently investigating the killing of Babbitt.

Metropolitan Police Chief Robert J. Contee III said Wednesday that there were three other deaths besides Babbitt.

One adult female and two adult males appear to have suffered from separate medical emergencies, which resulted in their deaths,” he said.

Wednesday marked a day of planned rallies in protest of the November election results. Activists largely advocated for increased election transparency, requesting lawmakers and state representatives to review election results for alleged fraud.

Supporters of President Donald Trump and the Republican Party have been requesting states whose election data has been disputed to audit the results and disclose the data for review; information they believe will be essential to proving fraud. Complaints also include recent changes in election procedures which allegedly violate laws set by the respective state legislatures.

State government officials have largely rejected the claims, denying the allegations while continuing to withhold the election data. Some states have already started shredding ballots and signature envelopes.

The refusal of state governments to conduct internal investigations of the election results have bolster voter distrust, with 77% of republicans believing that there was “widespread fraud” in the November elections, according to a recent poll by Quinnipiac University.

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