(Video Credit: JAI BHIM TJ NEWS)
Another Jan. 6 protester named Stephen Ayres turned on former President Trump during the Jan. 6 inquisition and blamed him for his actions that day, cravenly hugging DC police officers and apologizing to them.
Ayres is awaiting sentencing after breaching the Capitol on Jan. 6. He was grilled by the panel over his actions and what led him to attend the protest. In a transparent effort to save his own hide, he asserted that Trump “riled” protesters up and that he no longer believed in the “big lie.”
Following his testimony on Tuesday, Ayres made his way over to Officers Harry Dunn, Michael Fanone, and Aquilino Gonnell, who were at the riot that day and have taken center stage against the protesters during the kangaroo court hearings.
Ayres can be seen in videos speaking with each officer and shaking their hands. Leftists and the media literally drooled over the spectacle.
(Video Credit: C-SPAN3)
Politico reporter Kyle Cheney caught the moment when Ayres spoke with Fanone after his testimony.
“FANONE just told us that he responded to Ayres by saying ‘No apology necessary.’ He added, it ‘doesn’t really do sh-t for me. I hope it does something for him,'” Cheney reported.
FANONE just told us that he responded to Ayres by saying “No apology necessary.”
He added, it “doesn’t really do shit for me. I hope it does something for him.”
— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) July 12, 2022
Washington Post‘s Jacqueline Alemany called it an “extraordinary moment.”
NBC News reporter Ryan Reilly noted that Ayres skipped over Erin Smith, who is the widow of Capitol Officer Jeffrey Smith who committed suicide after the riot. He would later come back and hug her.
During his testimony, Ayres told the committee that he breached the Capitol that day because he felt Trump called on him to do so. His palming off of responsibility for his actions during the protest was an overt act of cowardice and desperation in front of his inquisitors.
“Well, basically the president got everybody riled up, told everybody to head on down. So we basically–we were just following what he said,” Ayres claimed.
He said that he regretted listening to the former president and that going to the Capitol on Jan. 6 had destroyed his life. The defendant said that he lost his job and had to sell his house.
“It definitely changed my life, not for the good,” Ayres stated according to MSNBC. “Definitely not for the better.”
(Video Credit: MSNBC)
He went on to assert that after attending Trump’s morning rally on the day of the riot, he felt “angry” and joined other protesters who stormed the Capitol.
Since his arrest, Ayres has had a change of heart and now says that he views Trump’s stolen election claims as baseless.
“So as you started marching, did you think there was still a chance the election would be overturned?” Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-WA) asked Ayres during the hearing.
“Yeah, at that time I did. ‘Cause everybody was kind of like in the hope that Vice President Pence was not going to certify the election. Also, the whole time on our way down there, I kept hearing about this big reveal I remember us talking about. And we kind of thought, maybe that was it. That hope was there,” he remarked.
Stephen Ayres, the January 6 defendant who stormed the Capitol, just came up to each officer in attendance.
“I’m really sorry,” Ayres told Harry Dunn, hugging him. pic.twitter.com/PMnVVAE0c8
— Julie Tsirkin (@JulieNBCNews) July 12, 2022
“Did you think that the president would be marching with you?” Murphy inquired.
“Yeah, I think everybody thought he was going to be coming down. He said it in his speech. You know, like he’s going to be there with us. So I mean, I believed it,” he disingenuously replied.
“I understand. We know that you illegally entered the Capitol that afternoon and left the Capitol area later on. What made you decide to leave?” Murphy asked him.
“Basically when President Trump put his tweet out. We literally left right after that came out. You know, to me, if he would have done that earlier in the day, 1:30, I–you know, maybe we wouldn’t be in this bad of a situation or something,” Ayres said throwing Trump under the bus for the committee sounding as if he had been coached.
There was something off about Stephen Ayres testimony today…… pic.twitter.com/TCezqAOZTi
— Mystery Solvent (@MysterySolvent) July 13, 2022
Ayres was arrested on Jan. 25, 2021, and charged with obstruction of an official proceeding and aiding and abetting, entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, and disorderly conduct in a Capitol building.
He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor of disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building in June, according to the New York Times. He will be sentenced in September.
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