America’s Modern Day Hero: Eugene Goodman

In the aftermath of the Jan. 6 right-wing insurrection on the U.S. Capitol, harrowing video footage has surfaced providing an inside look at what took place inside the lawmakers’ building. 

The event unfolded at the behest of the former president encouraging his supporters to march on the Capitol. An unfortunate and unprecedented event occurred, leaving five dead, including a Capitol officer, with dozens more injured. 

The threat to lawmakers in the Capitol building was real. Among the many extremists trespassing on federal grounds were some armed in tactical gear carrying zip ties, likely searching for lawmakers to hold hostage, or worse. Strikingly, nearly one in three rioters charged at the insurrections are military veterans.

AJ Plus via Twitter.

Thankfully, none of the lawmakers were seriously harmed during the riot, though video footage of the event shows just how much violence was on the other side of their barricade. Distressing events unfolded, including footage filmed of a young Capitol officer as he was being crushed in between a door by right-wing extremists. The officer later said the violent mob also ripped his mask off.

Among the video footage, a clip has gone viral on social media, leading to the widespread praise of Capitol police officer Eugene Goodman, for his quick thinking and bravery during the insurrection. 

Goodman was filmed alone, goading a violent mob away from lawmakers who were barricaded just feet away, sheltering inside the Senate chambers. 

Goodman, a Black officer, was filmed distracting and luring away a group that included white supremacists, with individuals carrying Confederate flags. The footage, captured by the Huffington Posts’ Igor Bobic, shows just how much was at stake when Goodman, alone in the hall of the Capitol, distracted the mob while they were making their way to the Senate chamber. 

Goodman’s quick-thinking strategy was to lead the mob away from lawmakers’ chambers by running in the opposite direction, likely leading the mob to think he was either running away or that he was protecting a different hallway. 

Goodman singlehandedly led the mob away from the barricaded lawmakers, up a flight of stairs and into a passage where more officers were standing ready. 

Igor Bobic via Twitter.

Amazingly, Goodman even managed to keep his mask on while luring away the majority maskless rioters. After the riot, 38 Capitol officers have since tested positive for COVID-19.

Following widespread praise, lawmakers have introduced a bill to honour Goodman by awarding him with a Congressional Gold Medal for his bravery.

Recently elected Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock was pictured with Goodman, calling him a “true American hero.”

Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock via Twitter.

Goodman was most recently pictured at Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ Jan. 20 inauguration, seen personally escorting Vice-President Harris to the event. 

Phil Mattingly via Twitter.