FBI probed Ashli Babbitt, saw her as terrorist, after her Jan. 6 death

Eight days after a U.S. Capitol Police officer shot and killed Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt during the Jan. 6, 2021, political riots, the FBI opened a criminal investigation into her actions and even considered adding her to the terrorist watch list.

According to FBI documents received by the legal watchdog Judicial Watch and shared with Secrets, the FBI considered investigating Babbitt for four “potential violations of federal law,” including rioting.

After listing those violations, the FBI report turned to the terrorist watch list.

But in acknowledging her death on Jan. 6 as she tried to enter the House Speaker’s Lobby through a broken window on a swinging door, the FBI said, “Babbitt is deceased and therefore this case is not being nominated” to the terrorist database.

The release of the 62 mostly redacted pages obtained by Judicial Watch under the Freedom of Information Act shows just how far the government planned to take its case against Babbitt.

Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton expressed shock that the government would consider what would have amounted to posthumous charges against the unarmed 36-year-old wife and businesswoman.

“It is beyond belief that the Biden FBI gave Ashli Babbitt’s killer a free pass while engaging in a malicious months-long ‘criminal’ investigation of Babbitt herself,” he said.

The shooter, Lt. Michael Byrd of the Capitol Police, was never charged and for months the government hid his identity and put him up in a hotel at Joint Base Andrews.

According to other documents provided to Judicial Watch, Babbitt entered the Speaker’s Lobby behind the House floor showing her empty hands. Byrd shot without warning.

The FBI documents said that there was a second shooting that day related to the riots, though no other details were provided.

Judicial Watch has filed a $30 million wrongful death suit for Babbitt’s family. Just last week, it said in a court filing that the federal government is trying to move that case from California to Washington, D.C., where judges and juries have been sympathetic to prosecutors.

The new documents included an interview with somebody who knew Babbitt and who said that she likely knew the risk of entering the Capitol, but not of getting shot.

The unidentified person “judged that BABBITT likely recognized that entering the Capitol was unauthorized and knew the risk. In that situation [redacted] assessed that Babbitt followed the crowd and felt secure being amongst like-minded individuals. [Redacted] judged that her leadership nature may have taken hold when she attempted to enter a new room within the Capitol where she was shot. [Redacted] judged that she likely did not know the risk of passing through the widow. BABBITT would never ‘go after someone physically’ according to [redacted],” the FBI report said.

The apparent acquaintance also said that Babbitt’s political views were unknown.


That same person also gave details of Babbitt’s military career and personal passions. Judicial Watch highlighted three key points:

— In 2008, Babbitt transitioned to the Air Force Reserve at Sheppard Air Force Base but continued to serve on active duty orders. In 2009, [Redacted] and Babbitt [redacted] where Babbitt continued to serve out the remainder of her career in either the Reserves of Air National Guard at Andrews Air Force Base. At one point Babbitt transitioned Military Occupational Specialties to serve as a mechanic, but ultimately returned to Security Forces. According to [Redacted] Babbitt was excellent at her job and [redacted].

— Babbitt deployed several times throughout her service. In 2005, Babbitt deployed to Manas Air Base in Kyrgyzstan. In 2006, Babbitt was deployed to Camp Bucca in southern Iraq which served as a Theater Internment facility. In approximately 2012-2014, Babbitt deployed to the United Arab Emirates. Babbitt did not suffer any physical or mental injuries stemming from her deployments and [redacted]. While stationed in Alaska, Babbitt did suffer from a torn meniscus [a common knee injury] which had occurred while she was previously stationed in Texas. While deployed to Camp Bucca, Babbitt did fly to Camp Arifjan in Kuwait [redacted].

— [Redacted] characterized Babbitt as very outgoing, opinionated, loud, very intelligent, loyal, sweet, very loving and caring. At times, Babbitt was not a fan of her chain of command and made her views known. Babbitt was a leader rather than a follower and liked being her own boss. Consequently, she was happy running her pool company in California. Babbitt loved her family and loved her country.

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