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‘He Ran Away Like a Coward’: Cop Who Defended US Capitol Torches GOP Lawmaker Who Refused His Handshake

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Rep. Clyde

Michael Fanone, a DC Metropolitan Police officer who defended the US Capitol on January 6 and was repeatedly beaten and electroshocked by the Trump mob, slammed GOP Rep. Andrew Clyde as a “coward” on Wednesday evening for refusing to face him about the incident as called Clyde’s behavior “disgusting.”

Clyde, a Georgia Republican, has repeatedly sought to downplay the Capitol riot and sugarcoat the actions of former President Donald Trump and his supporters. During a House hearing last month, Clyde famously tried to characterize the deadly riot as “a normal tourist visit,” even though he was pictured on Jan. 6 trying to barricade a door to the House gallery. He was one of 21 House Republicans who on Tuesday voted against awarding a Congressional Gold Medal to all police officers who responded to the insurrection.

Fanone visited Capitol Hill Wednesday in an effort to speak with those lawmakers and educate them on what he and his colleagues experienced, he told CNN’s Don Lemon.

He said he ran into Clyde while he was there and tried to introduce himself in an elevator.

“I was very cordial. I extended my hand to shake his hand. He just stared at me. I asked him if he was going to shake my hand and he told me that he didn’t know who know I was,” he said.

“So I introduced myself. I said that I was Officer Michael Fanone, that I was a D.C. Metropolitan police officer who fought on January 6th to defend the Capitol. And as a result, I suffered a traumatic brain injury as well as a heart attack after having been tased numerous times at the base of my skull, as well as being severely beaten.”

At that point, Clyde turned away from him and pulled out his cellphone, Fanone said. He said Clyde did not acknowledge him at any point and then “as soon as the elevator doors opened, he ran as quickly as he could like a coward.”

Fanone suffered a heart attack and a concussion during the insurrection and is dealing with a traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder.

He said that he took the interaction with Clyde “very personally” and saw it as an insult to not only himself but also all law enforcement who had responded to the Capitol on January 6.

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