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Kamala Harris drove within yards of undiscovered DNC pipe bomb before Capitol riot

Pipe bombs close to Democratic and Republican headquarters credited by law enforcement as drawing attention away from Capitol

John Bowden
Monday 31 January 2022 17:59 GMT
FBI release new footage of Capitol pipe bomb suspect

Vice President Kamala Harris was one of many Democrats who was physically present at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington DC on 6 January, 2021 when a pipe bomb later discovered by authorities was present outside the building.

The then-future vice president even drove within a few yards of the yet-undiscovered device on the morning of 6 January, a CNN report revealed on Monday, further underscoring the danger that America’s leaders faced as the shocking events of January 6 unfolded.

The pipe bombs that were discovered outside of the headquarters of America’s two major political parties on the day of the Capitol riot remain one of the biggest unresolved mysteries of January 6. Video footage released by the FBI shows an unidentified individual leaving two devices outside of the two locations on the evening of January 5, leading to serious questions about how much of the violence the next day was planned ahead of time.

While the devices did not detonate and no one was injured during their disposal, the response to the two locations nevertheless served to stretch out law enforcement resources around the city of Washington DC while Trump supporters descended on the Capitol with the intent of halting the peaceful transfer of power.

CNN reports that Ms Harris was “evacuated using an alternate route away from the bomb” roughly seven minutes before US Capitol Police began their investigation into the device at DNC headquarters, located just a couple of blocks south of the Capitol. The Secret Service declined to comment on the situation, typical of such investigations.

Ms Harris’s location during the violence on January 6 was not known, as she was in the area of Capitol Hill and had been in the building earlier in the day for a classified briefing.

"I was here at the Capitol that morning, at a classified hearing with fellow members of the Senate Intelligence Committee,” she said during remarks memorialising the one-year anniversary of the attack earlier this month.

The bomb threat at the DNC was not declared clear until nearly 5pm, more than two hours after Vice President Mike Pence was evacuated from the Senate floor as rioters stormed the Capitol complex.

FBI officials have yet to name any suspects in the bomb investigation, while hundreds of riot participants and those suspected of such offences have faced prosecution throughout 2021 and into 2022.

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