Two Capitol Police Officers sue Donald Trump for 'inciting supporters' to storm Congress

The officers claim the mob was directed to storm the Capitol by Trump's 'words and conduct'. Credit: AP

Two police officers injured during the insurgence at the US Capitol have filed a lawsuit against former President Donald Trump, claiming he incited the January 6 insurrection.

James Blassingame and Sidney Hemby said in the lawsuit that they are seeking damages of at least $75,000 (£54,400) for the severe physical and emotional damage that the riot caused them.

The lawsuit said that Mr Trump is responsible "by his words and conduct, directed the mob that stormed the Capitol".

"This is a complaint for damages by US Capitol Police officers for physical and emotional injuries caused by the defendant Donald Trump’s wrongful conduct inciting a riot on January 6, 2021, by his followers trying to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election,” the lawsuit said.

"During his 2016 campaign, and throughout his presidency, Trump had threatened violence towards his opponents, encouraged his followers to commit acts of violence, and condoned acts of violence by his followers, including white supremacists and far right-wing hate groups,” it continued.

Trump incited his supporters, the lawsuit claims. Credit: PA

Officer Blassingame, a 17-year veteran of the US Capitol Police, was one of just eight or nine officers facing the insurrectionists charging the Crypt, the lawsuit said, and were "dramatically outnumbered and overwhelmed as they became the targets of the mob's attack".

He said that he "lost count" of the amount of times a racial slur was shouted at him by the rioters.

He was struck in his face, head, chest and arms with insurrectionists using their fists and weapons including flagpoles and water bottles causing injuries to his head and back, the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit said: "He is haunted by the memory of being attacked, and of the sensory impacts – the sights, sounds, smells and even tastes of the attack remain close to the surface.

"He experiences guilt of being unable to help his colleagues who were simultaneously being attacked; and of surviving where other colleagues did not."

Officer Hemby, who served 11 years with the police force, received injuries to his left hand and left knee and skin burns due to being sprayed in the face with chemical sprays.

The lawsuit outlined the emotional toll of the attack which led to him being unable to sleep reliving the moments he was under attack.

"He felt unsafe and each time he drifted off to sleep, he was awakened by the fear that people were trying to break into his home," the lawsuit said.

"Officer Hemby is under the care or an orthopedic medical specialist and receives physicaltherapy two to three days per week for his neck and back.

"He continues to sleep poorly and feels hyper-aware and on high alert during his wakinghours.

"Officer Hemby normally has a calm demeanor but has struggled to manage the emotionalfallout from being relentlessly attacked."

Five people have died as a result of the assault on Congress, including police officer Brian Sicknick.

Trump's words to rioters on January 6 has already led to his impeachment for incitement and public condemnations by lawmakers of both parties.