Capitol rioters discuss floor plans and police positions in livestream footage: 'It felt improvised & chaotic'
A group of pro-Trump protesters is seen discussing floor plans and police positioning inside the Capitol on January 6 as they plotted to "take over" the federal building in live stream footage recorded by reporter Jeremy Lee Quinn.
The clip, which was originally shot by Quinn for his 'Unblocked Podcast,' showed pro-Trump rioters figuring out a plan to "take this building" while gathered inside what appeared to be an office inside the legislature. "This is the clip that's been ripped from my lifestream... I'm ripping it back. It was a kind of autonomous organizing in that it wasn't well organized. It felt improvised & chaotic more than anything. No indication these people knew each other but were coordinating in the moment," Quinn captioned the clip.
This is the clip that's been ripped from my lifestream... I'm ripping it back. It was a kind of autonomous organizing in that it wasn't well organized. It felt improvised & chaotic more than anything. No indication these people knew each other but were coordinating in the moment. pic.twitter.com/bcgBH4SBIP— Jeremy Lee Quinn (@JLeeQuinn) January 13, 2021
The video begins with a man outside the Capitol shouting through a megaphone to the crowd gathered: "Who’s ready to make history with me? Who’s a patriot? I’m going in to Capitol Hill by myself. Who wants to back [me] the f*** up," the unidentified man said. "Patriots let’s do this right f***ing now." The demonstrators donned Trump merchandise, held US flags, and some wore gas masks as they attempted to pile in through a window of the Capitol chanting, "USA! USA!"
Once inside, the group's first concern was a door that had been "barricaded" by police "at the top of the stairs." A male member of the group is heard saying, "What’s the floor plan?" At this, the man with the microphone who appeared to be leading the group, disclosed a detailed route of doors and stairways they should follow and avoid, adding at one point, "[the] door to the right, there’s a cop." "The door is already open," another man, wearing a gas mask said. "We need a plan, we need more people, we need to push forward."
The maskless members of the group then began moving furniture in the room, during which one of them called out, "Take the table, use the table as a shield." Several people then began lifting a large, heavy wooden table and file it through a door as they made their way further into the building. To block police off from their entry point into the building, they lay the table across the top of a stairwell.
As the group returned back to the room they had originally entered, a woman with a megaphone peered through a broken window and told the rest of the mob outside, "Guys, I’ve been in the other room. There’s another room on the other side of this wall … there’s a glass, which somebody has broken and you can drop down into a room underneath it. There’s also two doors in the other room, one in the rear, and one to the right when you go in. So people should probably co-ordinate together, if you’re going to take this building."
Soon the apparent leader of the group begins to wave Quinn through an open door, when the latter asked, "Tell me what you’re doing" and "give me some narrative." "Look for yourself," the man responded, pulling a gas mask down over his face. Through a hallway, large groups of rioters had spilled into nearby offices. One of the protesters, at one point, stood near a Mac computer, winding an electrical device up, which he appeared to be stealing. Online viewers have theorized it could be a large external hard drive. At the mid-way point of the video, a series of flashbangs are deployed and tear gas starts filling up the area and the demonstrators are seen racing out of a window. Quinn tells the camera ‘I’m okay, but I’m getting out of here’, and then proceeds to exit the Capitol through a window.