Questions surround police preparation and response at U.S. Capitol Wednesday

NOW: Questions surround police preparation and response at U.S. Capitol Wednesday

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Many people are questioning the police response to the chaos at the Capitol on Wednesday. 

Some are wondering why the protest was not met with the same level of law enforcement seen during protests for Black Lives Matter. 

Activist and radio show host Tory Lowe was in D.C. last summer for the March on Washington. 

"There were a lot of police, a heavy police around the celebration time because they knew there would be protests afterwards," said Lowe. 

He says he thought there was a double standard from the level of police preparation and response at the Capitol in comparison to protests for racial justice. 

"I just thought it was a disgrace," he said. 

"To have institutions that use their discretion in a way that responds to one particular protest or action differently than another, underscores the change that needs to happen in this country in a very structural, on a structural and systemic level," said Reggie Moore, director of Milwaukee's Office of Violence Prevention. 

He says he would like to see an investigation into the law enforcement response. 

CBS News reports social media appears to show Trump supporters entering a security perimeter with little resistance from officers. In another, people appear to be posing for selfies with those in uniform. 

"It was clear that the response to the violence at the U.S. Capitol yesterday was completely different than the response that we saw to protests for racial justice across the country, many of which were peaceful, and the response to those were met with rubber bullets, tear gas and other reactions that didn't necessarily match the level of the protests," said Moore. 

"Like a lot of Americans, I watched the siege that took place in horror and just can't believe what was seen from a general perspective," said Jim Palmer, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Professional Police Association. 

He says it's not uncommon for law enforcement to monitor social media activity, and have an idea of what people are planning. 

"I think from a law enforcement perspective, the lack of security measures that were in place is baffling and its inexplicable, and I suspect there will be a full and thorough investigation, as there should be so we can understand why what we saw contrasts so significantly to the measures that were in place last summer for the Black Lives protests that occurred in Washington D.C. that followed the tragic death of George Floyd."

According to the Associated Press, the head of the U.S. Capitol Police defended the department's response saying officers, "acted valiantly when faced with thousands of individuals involved in riotous actions."

Share this article: