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Black US Capitol Police officer recounts January 6: ‘They showed that they hated us and they hated our skin color’




“The struggle of black officers was different because, as I said, we fought not only against the people we were, who hated what we represented, but they also hated the color of our skin,” Harry Dunn told Don Lemon of CNN’s “CNN Tonight.” “That’s just a fact and they used those words to prove it, they showed they hated us and they hated the color of our skin.”

Flags, signs and symbols of racist, white supremacist and extremist groups were displayed along with Trump 2020 banners and American flags in the January 6 revolt at the United States Capitol. Black officers played a key role in defending lawmakers during the attack.

Images of the insurgency, some of which were published during the trial of former President Donald Trump, show Eugene Goodman, another Black Capitol Police officer, redirecting Utah Sen. Mitt Romney , from the path of riots. Goodman then continued to the first floor to respond to the rape and worked to deflect the crowd of lawmakers. At another meeting, when a crowd of insurgents chased him, Goodman also had the mental presence to turn them away from lawmakers and toward security officers.

The attack, which killed five people and injured more than 100 police officers, has left black police officers defending the Capitol that day according to their experience, Dunn said. Although white police officers were also verbally and physically attacked by the insurgents, Dunn noted that he and his black comrades had to endure racist beards: which left some in tears.

“Once I had time to sit down and put it all together, it was so overwhelming: that here we are giving so much and putting our lives on the line of protecting democracy and maintaining it and they call us racial insults, traitors, and any weapons these people might use because they were upset about something, ”he said.

“And you know why I guess it’s a little harder for me now, because at the time I did the first interview, I didn’t know the pain a lot of other classmates had suffered. They shared them with me.”

On Wednesday, Dunn rejected claims that he was playing “the race card” or that he had a political agenda discussing the racist elements of the attack.

“I didn’t wake up that morning and I want to be called *****, simple and straightforward,” he told Lemon. “He didn’t ask me to be called that, so I didn’t add any career to it. I just wanted to do my job.”

He continued, “So I wanted to talk to my co-workers and some of my closest friends and say that this is a time and we need to grow from this country as a country, as a people, as a race, as a profession. There are so many, so many teaching moments here and I don’t want them to escape. “

CNN’s Paul LeBlanc, Mallory Simon and Sara Sidner contributed to this report.