Capitol Police Release Statement on Officer Sicknick's Cause of Death

Leah Millis/Pool via AP

Washington DC’s Chief Medical Examiner issued a statement early Monday afternoon with the results of Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick’s autopsy, which determined that Sicknick died of natural causes, more specifically, “acute brainstem and cerebellar infarcts due to acute basilar artery thrombosis.”

As Bonchie noted, Chief Medical Examiner Francisco J. Diaz also said that Sicknick did not suffer any type of allergic reaction to “any chemical irritants.” And, as we reported on February 5, the police union and Sicknick’s family believed the cause of death to be a stroke, based upon what they were told at the hospital.

The Capitol Police have now released a statement regarding these findings:

The USCP accepts the findings from the District of Columbia’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner that Officer Brian Sicknick died of natural causes. This does not change the fact Officer Sicknick died in the line of duty, courageously defending Congress and the Capitol.

The Department continues to mourn the loss of our beloved colleague. The attack on our officers, including Brian, was an attack on our democracy.

Working with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, the F.B.I.’s Washington Field Office and the Metropolitan Police Department, the USCP will continue to ensure those responsible for the assault against officers are held accountable.

Officer Sicknick, 42, joined the Department in July 2008, and most recently served in the Department’s First Responder’s Unit.

On March 14, Julian Elie Khater, 32, of State College, Pennsylvania, and George Pierre Tanios, 39, of Morgantown, West Virginia, were arrested for assaulting Officer Sicknick.

Khater and Tanios are each charged with one count of conspiracy to injure an officer; three counts of assault on a federal officer with a dangerous weapon; one count of civil disorder; one count of obstructing or impeding an official proceeding; one count of physical violence on restricted grounds, while carrying dangerous weapon and resulting in significant bodily injury; and one count of violent entry and disorderly conduct, act of physical violence on Capitol grounds.

The United States Capitol Police will never forget Officer Sicknick’s bravery, nor the bravery of any officer on January 6, who risked their lives to defend our democracy.

Officer Sicknick’s family requests their privacy be respected during this difficult time.

Will this matter to all of the people — both progressives and the Never Trumpers who still call themselves conservatives — who relentlessly pushed the narrative that Sicknick was beaten to death with a fire extinguisher? Who cast all Republicans as murderers? Will the record even be corrected?

According to the timeline released by the Medical Examiner, Sicknick was sprayed around 2:20 p.m. and collapsed in his office around 10:00 p.m. This is a much longer time frame than suggested by the Capitol Police in a statement released immediately following Sicknick’s death in which they said he was “injured while physically engaging with protesters,” and then “he returned to his division office and collapsed,” and was taken to the hospital. He died around 9:30 p.m. the following night.

According to Law & Crime:

However, Diaz added that Sicknick having been among the officers who engaged with the Capitol mob “played a role in his condition.”

What role that engagement played is unclear from current reports. Did the stress of the day raise his blood pressure, leading to a stroke?

Obviously, using bear spray on a federal law enforcement officer who’s attempting to prevent an excited throng of people from overrunning the Capitol is wrong. Using bear spray on any law enforcement officer is wrong. If the two charged with doing that are guilty, they should face the appropriate consequences. But Democrat and feckless Republican politicians and their friends in the media need to stop making up “facts” to support their narrative. (I know, I’m not holding my breath.)