New Jersey National Guardsman Recalls Security of US Capitol After January 6 Attack – Greeley Tribune

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Thursday marks the one-year anniversary of the deadly January 6 attack on the US Capitol in Washington DC as rioters stormed the Capitol in an attempt to overthrow the 2020 presidential election.

This will be etched forever in the minds of the MPs and all those present there that day. Eyewitness News spoke to a member of the New Jersey National Guard who says he will never forget that day.

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Like many of us, this National Guardsman was watching the attack on television. And then he says that his phone rang and he had no choice but to answer.

“I would never have imagined in my wildest imagination that we would be called to go to the Capitol to defend the Capitol. It’s something you don’t think about,” 1 Sgt. Joseph Kern said.

But that call came and Kern and his soldiers answered. The eyewitness news was in Blackwood a year ago as 100 of its soldiers, along with the New Jersey National Guard, geared up to defend the Capitol. He will be in Washington DC for the next three weeks through the inauguration of President Joe Biden.

“I’ve never been a part of an inauguration before, so I have nothing to base it on. But seeing how more cities have been closed in my time abroad, it felt like going through layers of security.” It was crazy to enter the mall. It felt the same way as trying to pass through the green zone in Baghdad,” Kern said.

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He worked closely with the Secret Service and the Capital Police. After the January 6 attack, their main mission was riot control.

To secure the inauguration, approximately 25,000 National Guards and women were called to Washington.

“These officers didn’t come that day to act as Republicans or Democrats, but as people responsible for working to keep us all safe,” said Delaware Sen. Chris Koons.

According to the Justice Department, 725 people have been arrested. They all come from 50 states. 59 arrests were made in Pennsylvania, 22 in New Jersey and three in Delaware.

“It was not a peaceful protest. These were crimes against our country and against the US Constitution itself,” said Pennsylvania Rep. Mary Gaye Scanlon.

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Kern said the mission was accomplished because the inauguration was peaceful.