An attorney representing a Minnesota woman allegedly beaten by a Metropolitan Police Department supervisor outside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 is calling for a special prosecutor to be appointed after the release of dramatic video footage of the incident on Thursday.
Victoria C. White, 39, of Rochester, Minnesota, had been arrested in April and charged with numerous felonies for her alleged role in violence at the Capitol. New York attorney Joseph McBride, who represents White in her criminal case, said the video shows a very different picture than what federal prosecutors portrayed in White’s charging documents.
The video shows a woman McBride identified as White being repeatedly struck with a collapsible baton by the same police officer in the west terrace tunnel of the Capitol on Jan. 6. McBride identified the policeman as a Metropolitan Police Department supervisor, a lieutenant, because of his white uniform and riot helmet with “MPDC” painted on the back. His name is not yet known.
The video shows White slumping to the ground numerous times over more than five minutes. Mace was sprayed in her face several times. She got up and was struck repeatedly with the baton. White suffered nearly three dozen blows before she was handcuffed and led away, McBride said. The supervisor at times put away the baton and punched White in the face with his bare fist, and grabbed her hair and jerked her head back and forth, McBride said.
“The highest-ranking officer in the tunnel targets her and just absolutely tees off on her and begins to brutally beat her,” McBride told The Epoch Times after releasing the footage.
Until this week the video had been under court seal, but a judge ordered three hours of footage released, based on a motion from McBride in another Jan. 6 case.
“There are multiple times when you can see in the video she’s got her hands up and she’s basically begging for mercy and she’s shown no mercy. The beating intensifies and is a horrific attack on a woman by a man in a leadership position.”
Police Brutality?The video revelations come just two weeks before the one-year anniversary of the massive rally of President Donald Trump supporters that morphed into what police described as a riot that forced the evacuation of lawmakers in session to count electoral votes from the November 2020 election.
Ashli Babbitt, a Trump supporter from California, was shot and killed by police as she attempted to climb through a door window into the Speaker’s Lobby.
The new video could reignite debate about what took place that day, and also spark new discussions about police brutality.
McBride said he wants a special prosecutor appointed to investigate what took place in the tunnel. A Trump supporter, Rosanne Boyland, 34, died in the west terrace tunnel. The medical examiner ruled the cause of death was toxicity from a prescription medication. McBride said the tunnel video shows Boyland was repeatedly struck by police.
The Epoch Times asked the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington for comment, but have not yet received a reply.
“That is somebody who’s not only acting with authority but is acting with license,” McBride said. “That is somebody who is acting because he has no fear that he’s going to be reprimanded for his actions. Do I think that’s criminal? There is no doubt in my mind that what that man did was criminal.”
“There must be accountability,“ McBride said. ”There must be an investigation.”
McBride said he plans a civil lawsuit against the police. “We fully intend on suing them for what they did, because it’s wrong and she should be made whole again,” he said.
The video shows the west terrace tunnel entrance was initially clear of protesters. Then a man carrying an American flag appears to wave people to follow him and a group starts filling the tunnel to the spot where police in riot gear guarded entry to the Capitol. Eventually, police with riot shields pushed the crowd back. A melee erupted. The video shows rioters spraying mace at police, throwing objects including a bullhorn, and wielding pieces of lumber, which police eventually seized.
McBride said White was near the tunnel entrance but was not part of the riotous behavior. As the crowd surged toward the tunnel, White was forced inside and got trapped against one wall. That’s when the trouble started and White felt the first strike of the baton.
“I don’t know what he’s got going on in his life or whatever darkness he has in his heart, but it was certainly on full display there,” McBride said of the police officer.
‘Evil’ and ‘Dark’“The only way I can possibly describe it is that that’s evil,” McBride said.
Reached late Friday, the public information officer at the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia told The Epoch Times she had not heard of the video or McBride’s allegations.
McBride said the violence deeply affected White, because she was the victim of domestic violence from her ex-husband. She suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, and when being struck by the baton, she had flashbacks.
“When she was thrust into that hallway, when she was beaten by that officer, all that stuff came back in that moment to her. She’s been living with all that trauma ever since,“ McBride said. ”She has not yet returned and I don’t know if she will ever return to the person she was when she showed up on the 6th. You have a man twice her size and this time the guy, he’s got a gun and a badge, beating the ever-living crap out of her.”
This incident is shown in the video. She is seen speaking to some of the officers, then she is pulled down and sent tumbling to the ground.
“I was absolutely horrified to see myself get hit and start to fall,“ she told American Greatness. ”There were multiple officers hitting people. One officer in a white shirt focused solely on me. He kept bashing and hitting me over and over.”
McBride said the collapsible baton used against White is not intended for use above chest level unless an officer intends to use deadly force.
“An officer’s only supposed to use that in instances where he believes his life is in danger or he has to defend somebody else whose life is in danger,” McBride said. “As per their instructions, they are only supposed to use that on other parts of the body if they’re not trying to use deadly force.”
In a criminal complaint issued April 7, federal prosecutors charged White with knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds, parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building, impeding or attempting to impede law enforcement officers performing official duties, and obstruction of Congress. Hers is among the 625 cases listed on the U.S. Department of Justice’s Jan. 6 web page, although the FBI says more than 700 people have been arrested.
McBride said he has a video that shows White attempting to keep a vandal from smashing a window at the Capitol earlier in the day. She grabbed the man’s backpack and pulled him down.
“She was there at the Capitol to peacefully participate in protests,“ he said. ”When things start to get out of hand, she’s actually on video, she’s at a window that people are attempting to break, and she’s up there saying, ‘Stop it.’ To quote her she said, ‘We don’t do that [expletive],’ but she’s telling them to stop it, we don’t do that, we don’t break windows. We’re here to be peaceful.”
McBride said White did nothing to provoke police after she got forced into the tunnel. She was, however, wearing a bright red “Make America Great Again” cap popular among Trump supporters.
“She has done nothing wrong. She has done nothing illegal, and she’s clearly being beaten because she’s a Trump supporter,” he said. “This is the United States of America. We don’t pulverize people for political dissidence.”
White was eventually cuffed with zip ties. She had lost her coat, her phone, and her wallet. She was soaked with pepper spray. And she had no shoes. Those were lost in the tunnel, too. McBride said police told White if she needed medical assistance, they would then arrest and book her. Otherwise, they would spring her loose with no charges.
“She was told, ‘If you make any noise about this, we’ll just arrest you,’ ” McBride said.
“She was discharged with no shoes. She was put into the street in 30-degree weather with bags on her feet,“ he said. ”We don’t do that to women, we don’t do that to Americans. And then she was subsequently indicted anyway.”