SLCo DA Sim Gill joins over 60 prosecutors to denounce violence at U.S. Capitol

Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill. File Photo: Gephardt Daily

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, Jan. 11, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill has joined over 60 elected prosecutors from across the country in issuing a joint statement condemning the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol last week.

The statement calls for accountability for anyone who incited or was involved in the attack as well as all who failed to adequately prepare for or appropriately respond to it, said a news release from the DA’s Office

“Wednesday’s attack was not just against a building and the public servants who work there, but against our very system of government,” Gill said. “Just as freedom of speech is vital to our democratic society, the transformation of any public protest into riots, property damage, and physical assault is antithetical to it.

“Criminal lawlessness cannot be tolerated. Every elected official in this country should stand vigilant to protect our country, our states, and our local communities from attacks like what we saw last week, whether they are threatened by outside forces or by our own citizens.”

The joint statement calls for President Donald Trump and all other elected leaders to “denounce these attacks and those who participated in them in no uncertain terms, to cease perpetuating mistruths that are fanning distrust and division in our nation, and to accept the results of the 2020 election.”

The news release from Gill’s office added: “The statement also contrasts how many law enforcement agencies responded over the past year to overwhelmingly peaceful protests for racial equity across the country with mass arrests, force and militarization, with how some police appeared to stand aside for a crowd of predominantly white insurgents. The leaders call for systemic transformation and an independent Justice Department to restore public faith in the federal government.”

U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) also released a statement Monday morning in tribute to Officer Howard Liebengood, who reportedly died by suicide three days after responding to the siege.

“My team and I are heartbroken over the loss of Officer Howard Liebengood, a beloved and dedicated officer who devoted the past 15 years to keeping the Capitol community safe,” Romney’s statement said. “At his post in the Russell building, Howie was a familiar and cheerful presence, and also a friend to me and my staff, many of whom have known him for years. His bravery, kindness, and genuine care for others was deeply felt by all of us who had the privilege of knowing him.

“Our team prays for strength and comfort for Howie’s loved ones, his brother and sister officers, and all those whose lives he touched.”


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