As thousands of pro-Trump demonstrators marched — with some breaking into the U.S. Capitol and storming the chambers — several politicians representing Frederick County were quickly placed on lockdown, finding secure locations to shelter in place during a hectic day in the nation's capital.

One of them was State Sen. Michael Hough (R-Frederick and Carroll), chief of staff for Rep. Alex Mooney (R), who represents the second congressional district of West Virginia. As the demonstrators entered the Capitol, Hough and others were locked down in the Rayburn House Office Building, and monitored news updates for the rest of Mooney's staff.

"It’s very scary, and it’s completely awful that people would act that way and … I just hope no one gets hurt," Hough said of the situation, as he remained sheltered in place Wednesday. The Associated Press reported later Wednesday that a woman had been killed during the ordeal.

Hough, who has worked under Mooney for about four years, said he's seen nothing like Wednesday's events. There have been protests and similar precautions taken, but never a situation where armed demonstrators broke into the Capitol, he said. He believed the last time any similar event would have occurred was during the War of 1812.

Hough said he was against any use of violence to try to overturn the presidential election from last year.

"Absolutely, everybody should," Hough said when asked whether President Donald Trump should call on the demonstrators to stand down. Many people who are nonpolitical — police, custodial staff and other employees — commute to the U.S. Capitol complex and do not deserve to be endangered like they were Wednesday, he said.

Rep. David Trone (D), who represents the city of Frederick and much of southern Frederick County, said the House and Senate were in the process of certifying the U.S. election when demonstrators breached the first floor of the Capitol.

Speaking from a secure location, Trone said members were taken out a side door that police had secured after officers notified them demonstrators had reached the Rotunda outside the House chamber. They then used gas masks, which were placed under every other seat, Trone added.

The Capitol Police did a great job but were outmanned, Trone said. He criticized the "despicable" behavior of Trump and members of the Republican Party who fired up their base for the next presidential election, which he believes helped lead to Wednesday's proceedings.

"He's just simply a bad man," Trone said, calling for Trump to be impeached.

Earlier Wednesday, Trump held a rally near the Washington Monument, during which he told thousands of supporters the election had been stolen from him. Trump has consistently claimed without evidence the election was rigged and fraudulent.

Trump tweeted throughout the day, including calling on demonstrators at the Capitol to be "peaceful." He then posted a video stating he wanted the demonstrators to go home, adding: "We love you. You're very special." He continued to argue the election was stolen. That tweet and another were later removed by Twitter.

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D), who represents the northern portion of Frederick County, told C-SPAN Wednesday he didn't know exactly when protesters breached the Capitol, but that he was in the House chamber with his son-in-law and one of his daughters when it occurred. 

Raskin's 25-year-old son, Tommy, died at the end of December, and he hoped to show his son-in-law and daughter the "peaceful transfer of power in the United States government." But as protesters broke in, he immediately thought of their safety.

They were all in a secure location later Wednesday, but Raskin didn't mince words about what happened, sharing the same historical reference as Hough.

"This is an attack on the government of the United States," Raskin said on C-SPAN. "It did not even happen during the Civil War. I think you would have to go back to the War of 1812 to find this kind of attack on federal buildings."

Fred Propheter, president of the Frederick County Conservative Club, had led an effort to fill buses, with about 150 people, and transport them from the county to the nation's capital Wednesday.

The club has been traveling down in recent weeks to protest last November's election results. Propheter said they first heard President Trump give a speech around the Washington Monument earlier Wednesday. They then continued to march toward the U.S. Capitol before some protesters broke into the building.

Propheter said none of the Conservative Club members were close to the Capitol when it was stormed. He said they were waiting for buses to leave Washington D.C. around 3:30 p.m.

He agreed with Hough that Trump should call on demonstrators to stand down.

"I totally disagree with it, that’s not the way the system is supposed to work," he said about demonstrators breaking into the Capitol.

The National Guard was called to assist police at the Capitol, and other reinforcements were on the way, national media reported Wednesday.

The Frederick Police Department received a request from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, which appealed to area law enforcement agencies that have training in civil disturbance crowd control, acting Capt. Kirk Henneberry said. FPD does not meet the criteria to respond, he said.

FPD has a working relationship with the Metropolitan Police Department, and some of its officers usually are called in for the presidential inauguration. They also work with Metro police when investigations call for inter-agency cooperation. In 2012, Metro police provided some crowd control training to the department, Henneberry said. They can call on one another for mutual aid, he added, but it's rare.

The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office did not receive any requests for police assistance in the Capitol as of Wednesday afternoon, spokesman Todd Wivell said.

Former Frederick Police Department Chief Kim Dine, who left that post in 2012 to head the U.S. Capitol Police, said that Wednesday's events were heartbreaking and shocking on every level. He retired from the Capitol Police in January 2016.

The Capitol Police officers have a "massive" responsibility of protecting the entire Capitol campus, which consists of many buildings beyond the Capitol itself.

"That's essentially why they exist," Dine said.

He defined the department's purpose during more than three years in charge as protecting the people, the place and the process that takes place there.

"That's their mission, to protect that facility from enemies — foreign and domestic," he said.

______________

Staff writers Ryan Marshall and Mary Grace Keller contributed to this report.

Follow Steve Bohnel on Twitter: @Steve_Bohnel

Steve Bohnel is the county government reporter for the Frederick News-Post. He can be reached at sbohnel@newspost.com. He graduated from Temple University, with a journalism degree in May 2017, and is a die-hard Everton F.C. fan.

(24) comments

phydeaux994

Hough, could you please give the FNP a new picture that doesn’t make you look like you just smelled something bad?

KellyAlzan

I need to point out that Frederick county sheriff Charles ‘chuck’ A. Jenkins has been a long time loyalist and follower of Donald Trump. Jenkins proudly earned the nick name ‘Trumpkins’ Because of his astute admiration for Trump

matts853

Fred Propheter said: “....that’s not the way the system is supposed to work,"

Yeah, Fred, but that’s how Trump’s autocratic system works, and you and every other useful idiot that was there are too stupid to realize that you were protesting against a lie. You and yours were just puppets on a string pulled by Trump in his attempt to steal the election. You fell for it. There-Was-No-Fraud-Trump-Lost-Fair-N-Square. Are we clear?

NewMarketParent

You cannot put people in government on the premise that government is the problem. They will prove that government is the problem by breaking it.

NewMarketParent

We are watching the logical conclusion of the Southern Strategy unfold. This problem is laid squarely at the feet of years of using the politics of fear as a strategy to maintain and hold power for generations. You can only keep stoking that fire for so long before it erupts. I'm afraid were not done with this ride yet. Repubs own this and it won't change until they clean house and ranks. So far they have shown nothing, but complicity.

matts853

When is tough Hough going to auction off another AR 15 for his campaign? He’s part of the problem. It’s time to get rid of pure partisans like him that out party ahead of country.

BornToHula2

[thumbup]

yogib

The Repubs have lost their empathy and now we see the results. This is what people like Cox, Hough and their ilk have been wanting all along as they have done all they could to destroy government.

DickD

And just what did Fred Profepter expect going down to D.C. to cause problems after a legal election. All of them need their heads examined.

Hayduke2

Funny how quickly the local Republicans supporting anarchy try to distance themselves from the disgusting display that occurred yesterday.

NewMarketParent

As we watched with Hawley yesterday, they will distance themselves, but not too much distance. Can't get rubes to send you money if you don't keep them good and riled up.

Piedmontgardener

"I never thought smoking near gasoline was dangerous" Mooney and Hough. Get rid of this non small r Republicans. They are the problem.

phydeaux994

What the heck is the big deal, it’s just Trump being Trump. Right RRR(RadicalRightRepublicans)/BTT(BullyTagTeam)?

Dwasserba

Attempting to overthrow the government enacting the will of the people is not anyone's right. Sleeping thru civics class has consequences, Muricans.

MD1756

All those who charged and illegally entered the capitol building and disrupted Congress should be brought up on charges up to and including treason. It is one thing to peacefully protest it is another to storm the capitol. Trump incited the riots, he should be made to pay the costs related to the protest and illegal occupation of the capitol.

Dwasserba

Impeach.

MD1756

Not really enough time and no guarantee the senate will go for it. His crimes need to addressed once he is out of office.

Hayduke2

MD - [thumbup]

Brookhawk

Cox needs to be called out over and over again for this, because he and his ilk are responsible for what is happening in DC right now. The woman who was shot inside the Capitol has died. YOU are partly responsible for her and for any other deaths, Cox. YOU.

threecents

Brookhawk[thumbup][thumbup]

gabrielshorn2013

"Del. Dan Cox (R-Frederick and Carroll), a Trump supporter, tweeted out at 3:21 p.m. Wednesday, after some of the storming of the Capitol occurred: "Pence is a traitor."

He was referring to the belief he and others hold that Pence could overthrow the U.S. election results through opposing the certification process that was supposed to occur Wednesday."

And this guy is a lawyer??? He should know that the VP's function during the Electoral College proceedings is largely ceremonial! He has no power to do anything other than watch the proceedings. smh...

Hayduke2

Gabe - [thumbup]

NewMarketParent

@gabrielshorn2013

[thumbup][thumbup][thumbup]

Greg F

Harvard doesn’t flunk bad law students. They will take their money but never give them the degree and they will eventually just leave on their own and get what they need at TrumpU or some other for profit flunkie school. It could take 1000 tries at the bar and if they pass by one point...you are still a lawyer with your hard earned participation trophy.

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