PHOENIX - Thursday marked the one-year anniversary of a violent and deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
On Jan. 6, 2021, the nation watched a mob stormed the U.S. Capitol, breaching the building as Congress worked to certify results from the 2020 Presidential Election.
Many arrests made, including Arizonans
Within two months of the siege on the Capitol, the FBI said it had received hundreds of thousands of tips and arrested more than 300 individuals. Officials within that time were releasing dozens of videos and hundreds of screengrabs in hopes of getting more information on suspects involved.
Nearly 1,000 arrests have been made in the year since the Capitol riot in 2021 across the country. Out of the hundreds of protestors now facing federal charges, seven of them are from Arizona, including:
- Jacob Chansley, also known as the so-called QAnon Shaman. Chansley is serving a 41-month prison sentence after pleading guilty to obstruction of an official proceeding.
- Tim Gionet, also known as ‘Baked Alaska.' He is charged with knowingly entering a restricted building without lawful authority, in addition to violent and disorderly conduct.
- Klete Keller, an Olympic gold medalist, has pleaded guilty to Obstruction of Congress. He was captured on video wearing a Team USA jacket during the siege, and faces up to 27 months in prison.
- Nathan Entrekin, according to prosecutors, stormed the Capitol while portraying Captain Moroni, a figure from the Book of Mormon, and documented the riot with his cell phone. He has been released, but faces federal charges
Democratic, Republican lawmakers from Arizona reflect on fateful day
Arizona Democrat Ruben Gallego was in the Capitol building during the attack. On Jan. 6, 2022, he reflected on that day.
"There was a room full of Democrats and some Republicans that said we were not gonna let democracy die that night, and we didn't we didn't," said Rep. Gallego. "We came back to the floor after seeing the horrific battles outside, knowing that there was still danger, knowing that there was still bombs and IEDs, and pipe bombs everywhere."
One day after the deadly insurrection, Rep. Gellego recounted the scene inside the building, as he helped get other members to safety.
"Once we got everyone off the house floor, we evacuated to a secure location. I can’t mention it because it’s designed for all types of instances," said Rep. Gallego at the time.
During the chaos, Rep. Gallego jumped on a chair in the House floor to direct traffic.
Rep. Debbie Lesko (R) said she condemns the violence, but questions the security at the Capitol.
"It is unacceptable to me that Speaker Pelosi and leadership in law enforcement didn't have the U.S. Capitol secured," said Rep. Lesko. "There's one question that remains about January 6, one year out from its anniversary: Why was the Capitol so unprepared and unsecured, and what can we do to fix it?"
Vigil, counterprotest held at Arizona State Capitol
On the night of Jan. 6, 2022, two worlds were out on display at the Arizona State Capitol in Downtown Phoenix, with Democratic supporters promoting peace at the polls in one event held on the Capitol Lawn, while Trump supporters made their voices heard across the street.
Pinny Sheoran with the League of Women Voters of Arizona said she remembers being terrified.
"I was on a Zoom call with other league members, and we had to stop," Sheoran recounted. "We couldn't believe the shock that our country -- that we had people wanting to attack the Capitol, I would never imagine that. Never imagine that in America."
As the event on the Capitol Lawn took place, Trump supporters chanted at attendees of the event, which was organized in support of the right to vote, as well as to defend democracy.
DPS troopers provided security during the vigil.
The Associated Press (AP) contributed to this report.
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