April 14, 2021
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice will not pursue criminal charges against the U.S. Capitol Police officer involved in the fatal shooting of 35-year-old Ashli Babbitt, the office announced today.
The DOJ says investigators examined video footage posted on social media, statements from the officer involved and other officers and witnesses to the events, physical evidence from the scene of the shooting, and the results of an autopsy.
Based on that investigation, officials determined that there is insufficient evidence to support a criminal prosecution against the involved officer.
Federal authorities said:
“As members of the mob continued to strike the glass doors, Ms. Babbitt attempted to climb through one of the doors where glass was broken out. An officer inside the Speaker’s Lobby fired one round from his service pistol, striking Ms. Babbitt in the left shoulder, causing her to fall back from the doorway and onto the floor.”
The DOJ says federal prosecutors would have to prove not only that the officer used force that was constitutionally unreasonable, but that the officer did so “willfully.” Prosecutors say there is insufficient evidence that the involved officer willfully committed a federal crime, and evidence that he acted out of fear, mistake, panic, misperception, negligence, or even poor judgment is insufficient.
The DOJ announced the Ashi Babbitt case is now closed.