Doctor Who Tried to Save Ashli Babbitt on Jan. 6 Charged With 4 Misdemeanors for Time at the US Capitol

By Joseph M. Hanneman
Joseph M. Hanneman
Joseph M. Hanneman
Joseph M. Hanneman is a reporter for The Epoch Times with a focus on the January 6 Capitol incursion and its aftermath, as well as general Wisconsin news. In 2022, he helped to produce "The Real Story of Jan. 6," an Epoch Times documentary about the events that day. Joe has been a journalist for nearly 40 years. He can be reached at:
January 27, 2023Updated: January 30, 2023

A California doctor who treated the mortally wounded Ashli Babbitt after she was shot outside the House of Representatives on Jan. 6, 2021, was arrested by the FBI on four criminal charges stemming from his time at the U.S. Capitol.

Dr. Austin Brendlen Harris, 42, of Granada Hills, California, was arrested on Jan. 25 in Van Nuys, California.

Harris was charged in a criminal complaint in Washington D.C. with knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building or grounds without authority and disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds—both misdemeanors with sentences of up to a year in jail. He was also charged with disorderly conduct and parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building—both misdemeanors.

Harris operates NeuroRelief Ketamine & Infusion Therapy in Sherman Oaks, California. He’s a board-certified cardiothoracic anesthesiologist.

Epoch Times Photo
Dr. Austin Harris wore a “Lions Not Sheep” cap at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (U.S. Department of Justice/Screenshot via The Epoch Times)

Harris treated Babbitt’s gunshot wound for four minutes after U.S. Capitol Police Lt. Michael Byrd shot her at about 2:45 p.m. that day. When Babbitt fell from the window frame she was climbing into, Harris stepped forward from the hallway crowd to provide aid.

A video journalist with medic training also tended to Babbitt before police drove both men from the hallway outside of the Speaker’s Lobby.

Harris was on his knees checking Babbitt’s upper chest wound when a U.S. Capitol Police bicycle officer reached down and grabbed him by the shoulders. The officer wrestled Harris away from Babbitt, grabbed him by the jacket, and shoved him down the hallway.

Officer Shoves Doctor

The visibly angry officer kept pushing Harris and the two struggled down the hallway. It’s impossible to hear what was said between the men because the crowd was yelling at the police.

“You did that! You did that!” one protester shouted. “You guys shot her!”

Harris went back and asked the officer to retrieve his medical bag, which was still sitting next to Babbitt. The officer handed it back to him.

After Harris left the scene, police carried Babbitt head-first down the steps to the south entrance, where an FBI medic and others tried to keep her alive while a rescue squad was en route. She was pronounced dead at a Washington hospital at 3:15 p.m.

Epoch Times Photo
A U.S. Capitol Police officer shoves Dr. Austin Harris down the hallway outside the Speaker’s Lobby at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Jayden X/Screenshot via The Epoch Times)

According to the statement of facts filed by the U.S. Department of Justice, Harris entered the Capitol at 2:15 p.m. through the Senate Wing doors and headed for the Crypt, which is one level below the Rotunda.

“He attempted to bypass the line of officers and appeared to engage in a verbal confrontation with officers,” the charging document said.

A few minutes earlier, Harris was on the Lower West Terrace next to the inauguration platform. “He can be overheard comparing the officers to Nazis,” the statement read. The document didn’t include a direct quote or provide details on who heard the comment.

Epoch Times Photo
Ashli Babbitt (upper right) begins to fall back after being shot by Capitol Police Lt. Michael Byrd on Jan. 6, 2021. (Sam Montoya/Screenshot via The Epoch Times)

Prosecutors included a screen capture of a post from Harris’s Facebook page. In the post, Harris said he spent the day “treating trauma patients at the Capitol building.”

He also expressed his belief that the chaos in the Capitol was caused by “Antifa dressed up like Trump supporters.”

“It is a false-flag event to allow even more oppression of conservatives,” he wrote. “I am so sad for our country. So much deceit, such a craving for absolute power by the swamp establishment has led to our election integrity becoming a joke, that a 90-pound unarmed woman was gunned down by Capitol Police being absolutely no threat.”

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated the nature of two of the charges against Harris. He is charged with four misdemeanors. The Epoch Times regrets the error.