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Stephen Ayres, a former supporter of Donald Trump who stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021, apologized to the three police officers who had to protect the building that day from the rioters.
Ayres went to meet and shake hands with the police officers after testifying at Tuesday’s seventh public hearing of the House select committee looking into the attack on the Capitol. Ayres had testified before the congressional panel. Last month, he pleaded guilty to a charge of disorderly conduct.
Ayres talked to Aquilino Gonell, a sergeant with the Capitol Police, Harry Dunn, an officer with the Capitol Police, and Michael Fanone, a former officer with the Metropolitan Police Department. Each of the police officers has talked in public many times about the violence they saw on January 6, the physical injuries they received, and how the day has affected them emotionally. On Tuesday, they sat in the first row of the hearing room.
Several reporters in the room were there to record the moment. Kyle Cheney of Politico says that Fanone’s response to Ayres was, “No apology necessary.” He also said that the apology “doesn’t really do s*** for me.”
He told the Politico reporter, “I hope it helps him in some way.”
Ayres testified on Tuesday that he believed Trump’s false claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen, which led him to sneak into the Capitol on January 6.
Ayres told the committee, “I was upset, as were most of his supporters, and that’s basically what made me come down here.” He also said that he no longer thinks the election was stolen.
Ayres’ sentencing is set for September 13, and he could spend up to a year in prison.
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