A U.S. Capitol Police officer died Thursday night after being injured in Wednesday’s riots in Washington, police confirmed in a statement.
The officer was identified as Brian Sicknick, a member of the ministry’s first responder unit who joined the force in July 2008.
Sicknick’s death will be investigated as a homicide, Capitol Police said, with the investigation being handled by Capitol Police, Washington Metropolitan Police and federal agencies.
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Sicknick was on duty at the Capitol when he was injured “while physically engaging with protesters,” the statement said. The officer collapsed after the attack and was taken to a local hospital, where he died at 9:30 p.m. Thursday.
A police motorcade was captured on social media Thursday night escorting Sicknick on Constitution Avenue in Washington. Officers were seen lining the front of the Capitol in silence in honor of the officer, according to reports.
Members of Congress began to share their condolences following news of Sicknick’s death.
Senator Ted Cruz, of R-Texas, called the death “devastating” in a Twitter message early Friday.
“Heidi and I are prayerfully raising the family of the tragically killed US Capitol Police officer to protect us,” Cruz wrote. “He was a true hero. Yesterday’s terrorist attack was a horrific assault on our democracy. Every terrorist must be fully prosecuted.”
Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser also shared his condolences on Twitter, saying, “May he rest in peace, and we work tirelessly to honor his service to Congress and to our nation.”
“Our hearts are breaking over the senseless death of United States Capitol policeman Brian Sicknick, who was injured in yesterday’s violent attack on the Capitol. Our prayers go out to his family at her friends and colleagues in the force, ”said Rep. Tim Ryan D-Ohio, and House Appropriations Committee chair Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., wrote in a joint statement.
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“This tragic loss should remind us all of the bravery of the law enforcement officers who protected us, our colleagues, Congressional staff, the press and other essential workers yesterday,” the statement continued. “To honor the memory of Officer Sicknick, we must ensure that the mob that attacked the People’s House and those who incited them are fully held to account.
The officer was one of at least five people who died in the Capitol riots, which saw dozens of people, some armed with guns, roaming the halls of the federal building. Rioters smashed or dismantled property and stormed into the heads of the House and Senate chambers, while Hill’s staff and lawmakers were locked up or hiding behind chairs or tables.
Benjamin Phillips, 50, of Pennsylvania; Rosanne Boylan, 34, from Georgia; and Kevin Greeson, 55, of Alabama, died after suffering “medical emergencies” related to the violation, law enforcement officials said at a press conference Thursday.
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A fourth person – identified as Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt of California – was fatally shot by police during the riots.
Michigan Representative Peter Meijer tweeted that “it shouldn’t be like this.”
“Today five people have died, including Officer Sicknick. There are so many who should be ashamed of themselves, if they were able, ”he wrote.
More than 50 police officers from the Capitol and the Metropolitan Police Department were injured in the attack, authorities said in a statement on Thursday. Police added that “several policemen” had been hospitalized with serious injuries.
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“The entire USCP department expresses its deepest condolences to the family and friends of Officer Sicknick for their loss, and mourns the loss of a friend and colleague,” police said. “We ask that Agent Sicknick’s family and the privacy of other USCP agents and their families be respected during this time.”