Capitol Police officers sue Trump, right-wing groups over Jan. 6

WASHINGTON (thehill): Seven U.S. Capitol Police officers on Thursday filed a lawsuit against former President Trump, Trump ally Roger Stone and members of right-wing extremist groups over their role in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

The civil rights suit alleges Trump, acting in concert with groups like the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers, engaged in acts of domestic terrorism designed to unlawfully keep him in power despite losing the 2020 election.

The plaintiffs, five of whom are Black, say the effort was fueled by the defendants’ promotion of white supremacist-laden conspiracy theories and lies about the election being swayed by widespread voter fraud, particularly in areas with significant Black populations.

“As this lawsuit makes clear, the Jan. 6 insurrection was not just an attack on individuals, but an attack on democracy itself,” said Damon Hewitt, president of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, which is representing the officers. “It was a blatant attempt to stifle the votes and voices of millions of Americans, particularly Black voters.”

The complaint, filed in a Washington, D.C. federal court, follows several similar lawsuits filed in recent months, but is the first to accuse Trump of conspiring with far-right groups to use “force, intimidation and threats” to block Congress from certifying Joe Biden’s presidential election.

In addition to naming Trump and his campaign as defendants, the lawsuit also implicated more than a dozen members of extremist groups and political organizations. Among those were Stone, a longtime right-wing provocateur and recipient of presidential clemency under Trump, who allegedly raised funds for the Jan. 6 pro-Trump event and was a key promoter of Trump’s “Big Lie.”

The suit alleges that Trump and the other defendants violated both state law and provisions of the Ku Klux Klan Act, an 1871 federal statute that makes it illegal to use force or threats to prevent federal officers from carrying out their official duties.