FL Congresswoman Stephanie Murphy offers empathy to Capitol Police officer: ‘I listened to you struggle’

By: - July 27, 2021 2:37 pm

U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy of Florida speaks Tuesday (July 27, 2021) at the first House committee hearing of the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection. Credit: Screenshot C-SPAN.

U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy on Tuesday empathized with a U.S. Capitol Police officer who offered testimony on the deadly Jan. 6 attack by a mob of Donald Trump supporters.

Murphy, a Democrat, shared a chilling video that showed officers at the Capitol attempting to block rioters from storming the building during the first hearing by the committee selected to investigate the deadly riot.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had tapped Murphy to serve on the committee – similar to the commission established after the 9/11 attacks – as previously reported by the Florida Phoenix. Murphy represents Florida’s 7th Congressional district, which includes Seminole County and much of northern Orange County.

During the hearing, Murphy spoke with officer Daniel Hodges, who was among the many officers attacked by the mob.

Murphy told Hodges that she was held up by the mob with another Congresswoman “in a small office” near the entrance where Hodges was patrolling.

“I listened to you struggle, I listened to you yelling out to one another, I listened to you care for one another,” she said.

Capitol police struggle to block the mob of Trump supporters during the Jan. 6 riot. Credit: Screenshot/YouTube.

One Trump supporter in the video was seen grabbing an officer’s gas mask as he tried to enter the Capitol, while police held him back.

“Officer Hodges I know that must have been difficult to watch but I really think it’s important for the American people to see that,” Murphy said. “Most people don’t know this, and I don’t think you even know this but your actions had a profound impact on me.”

Hodges described his experience attempting to block an entrance at the Capitol on Jan. 6, saying officers struggled because “they outnumbered us” and that he “was crushed up against the door frame.”

“I followed the noise to the tunnel where it was just wall to wall people, packed,” Hodges added.

Meanwhile, in Florida, the gun licenses of 22 insurrectionists involved in the riot were suspended on Tuesday, according to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Division of Licensing.

The agency didn’t release the names of those individuals whose licenses were suspended.

The division administers the state’s concealed weapon licensing program, which has the authority to suspend licenses “if the licensee is charged with a felony or certain other disqualifying offenses,” according to a press release from the agency.

Nikki Fried, commissioner of Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services and the only statewide-elected Democrat, issued a written statement:

“The deeply disturbing events that occurred at our nation’s Capitol on January 6th were sedition, treason, and domestic terrorism – and those individuals involved in the insurrection must be held accountable for attempting to subvert our democratic process. Since charges began being filed, we are using our lawful authority to immediately suspend the licenses of 22 individuals involved in the storming of the U.S. Capitol. This is an ongoing effort, and as charges and sentences continue in the wake of this despicable attack, we will further suspend and revoke any additional licenses granted to insurrectionists.”

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Issac Morgan
Issac Morgan

Issac Morgan is a 2009 graduate of Florida A&M University's School of Journalism, and a proud native of Tallahassee. He has covered city council and community events at the Gadsden County Times, worked as a sports news assistant at the Tallahassee Democrat, a communications specialist for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and as a proofreader at the Florida Law Weekly.

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