Major Adam DeMarco described these preparations, including the failure of officials to acquire a strong announcement device to warn protesters to disperse, in an August letter responding to follow-up questions after testifying before the Committee. of Natural Resources of the House in June efforts of officers earlier this month. DeMarco, who described himself as one of the senior National Guard officials at the scene, ran as a Democrat for the Third District of Maryland Congress in 2018.
DeMarco wrote that he responded by saying that the DC National Guard had no device and that, to his knowledge, no acoustic device was used in Lafayette Square. When he examined to get the acoustic device the next day, the DC National Guard told him “they were no longer looking for him.”
Therefore, the U.S. Park Service’s “scatter warnings” did not come from this system, but from a “white and red megaphone” that DeMarco saw used, he wrote. He referred in his testimony in person that even 30 meters from the megaphone, “warnings of dispersal were barely audible and I could only discern several words,” while the front line of the protesters was even more so. away from the warning.
He also referred to an arms transfer to the DC National Guard on the afternoon of the protest which he later learned contained “approximately 7,000 rounds of ammunition.”
A Department of Defense official reported on the matter that minimized DeMarco’s account, the Post reported, stating that emails consulting specific weapons were routine for assessing available inventory. The official also told the newspaper that federal police failed to acquire a heat ray device during the first days of demonstrations in the city.
DeMarco’s attorney, David Laufman, discussed that characterization Wednesday, saying “there is nothing” routine “in investigating the availability of a heat jet to use against U.S. citizens exercising their primary rights. amendment “.
In his appearance before the committee in June, DeMarco stated that tear gas was in fact used, in contrast to the official account of federal officials.
By contrast, the acting head of U.S. parks police, Gregory Monahan, testified at the time that no tear gas was used, but his testimony suggested that he defines tear gas as a particular type of gas called gas CS.
This story has been updated with additional details.
CNN’s Manu Raju, Gregory Wallace and Jamie Crawford contributed to this report.