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Officer Harry Dunn, outspoken about Jan. 6, plans to leave Capitol Police

He testified about what officers experienced that day, and has indicated interest in running for Congress

Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn arrives for a Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony in December 2022, which awarded medals in recognition of “those who protected the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021.”
Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn arrives for a Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony in December 2022, which awarded medals in recognition of “those who protected the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Harry Dunn, a Capitol Police officer who delivered gripping testimony before the inaugural hearing of the House select committee to investigate the Jan. 6, 2021, attack, has taken steps to resign from the department.

“It’s not a secret, I’ve started the process of resigning,” Dunn, who has been with the department since 2008, said. “The resignation is in the process and, as of this day, I’m still a member of the Capitol Police.”

He did not provide the date he expects to leave the department.

Dunn, during the Jan. 6 panel hearing, recounted the violence he faced that day, how pro-Trump rioters launched racial slurs at him and the trauma that followed his defense of the complex that day.

Dunn released a book this fall detailing his experience on Jan. 6, 2021, and after, including his push for accountability.

Dunn has indicated interest in running for Congress in Maryland’s 3rd District, a seat currently held by Democrat Rep. John Sarbanes, who has said he will not seek reelection. Dunn currently lives in Montgomery County, Md., an area outside of the 3rd District.

“My mind is not made up on this, but nothing is off the table and I’m considering it,” Dunn said.

Dunn advocated for the creation of an independent, 9/11-style commission to investigate the Capitol attack. He went with Michael Fanone, a D.C. police officer who fought off rioters, and Gladys Sicknick, the mother of fallen Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, to meet with Republican senators, urging them to vote for the commission.

The bill to create that independent commission passed the House despite GOP leadership’s opposition but was ultimately tanked by Senate Republicans.

When the House voted to create the Jan. 6 select committee, Dunn and then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., shared a hug.

In testimony before the House Jan. 6 committee, Dunn recalled “desperate hand-to-hand fighting” at the Capitol and mass assaults on officers where rioters used improvised weapons, such as flagpoles, metal bike racks and projectiles on law enforcement. Officers were bleeding, screaming, blinded and coughing from the chemical irritants in the air, Dunn said.

And later, as Dunn stood in front of a group of 20 rioters, he described them calling him racial epithets because he said he voted for President Joe Biden. Dunn said other colleagues later shared their own experiences that day enduring the racial abuse.

In November 2021, he unsuccessfully ran to unseat Gus Papathanasiou as the leader of the Capitol Police’s union.

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