Spirit of January 6: Aaron Babbitt details his wife’s desperate efforts to stop the violence

by WorldTribune Staff, January 14, 2024

Three years after his wife Ashli Babbitt was shot an killed inside the U.S. Capitol by Capitol Police Lt. Michael Byrd, Aaron Babbitt says J6 has become his “hill to die on.”

Aaron has sold the California pool cleaning business he and Ashli ran and is now investigating her death full time.

Aaron Babbitt: ‘I got to the point where I realized I need to be the foremost expert on what happened to my wife.’

“Ashli’s name is going to be written in history books at some point,” Aaron told The Epoch Times. “And I want it to be written correctly.”

Aaron said his investigation has revealed that Ashli passionately tried to stop protesters from breaching the doors to the Speaker’s Lobby inside the U.S. Capitol and appealed for the police to take action before she was shot. What he has found, he said, runs counter to the narrative pushed by Democrats and leftist media that Ashli was a violent insurrectionist.

Related: Watchdog files $30 million wrongful death lawsuit against government on behalf of Ashli Babbitt’s family, January 5, 2024

Stunned for weeks after her death, Aaron said that, instead of withdrawing into his grief, he finally decided to launch a nonstop investigation of the shooting, searching for clues while wading through a sea of online disinformation and unbridled hatred from the Left.

“I got to the point where I realized I need to be the foremost expert on what happened to my wife,” he said. “And in being that, I need to watch every single second of footage of what happened to her. So I just turned it into a daily routine. I‘d wake up and search Ashli’s name on Twitter. I’d read all the bad stuff. I‘d look at all the pictures. I’d see all the videos.”

Aaron said he eventually reached the point where he had seen pretty much everything related to Ashli’s death. “More than all of you hateful people have seen. Everything. You can’t shock me anymore.”

Aaron said the pool-cleaning business he ran with Ashli came under attack. The business voicemail was a nonstop wave of hate-filled messages, such as, “Can Ashli come out and clean my pool?”

“We lost, like, 30 percent of our customers just based on name recognition. They didn’t want to be associated with us. And then I couldn’t take new customers on because I was getting death threats,” he said.

Aaron said he “ended up having to sell that business for pennies on the dollar. It hasn’t been easy.”

Aaron and his attorney went to Washington to retrace the steps Ashli took on Jan. 6. In 2022, Aaron was given a secret tour of the U.S. Capitol, arranged by former Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert.

“Babbitt and his attorney were instructed to be at a certain location near the Capitol late on a weeknight,” The Epoch Times noted. “A black SUV with dark windows pulled up at the specified location at the appointed hour. The pair got in. Babbitt looked and realized Gohmert was driving. The now-retired congressman dropped the men off at a discreet entrance to the Capitol, and they went inside. Babbitt was given a private moment on the spot outside the Speaker’s Lobby where his wife was fatally shot by Lt. Byrd. He was then given a tour of the Capitol by Gohmert and other supportive lawmakers.”

Soon after, Aaron and his attorney went to the O’Neill House Office Building to view U.S. Capitol Police security video. The invitation for that visit came from then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.

Moments before being fatally shot, Ashli Babbitt confronts three police offers for not stopping the vandalism outside the U.S. House. / Video Still / Tayler Hansen

McCarthy and staff from the Committee on House Administration promised Aaron he could obtain any videos he needed for his investigation, he said. More than 10 months later, however, he is still waiting. Despite submitting a detailed request, no videos have been turned over by the House.

When he went through all of the cell-phone videos taken in the hallway outside the Speaker’s Lobby, Aaron said he saw his wife’s years of training as a military police officer and the tours she spent in places like Iraq and Afghanistan. She looked at what unfolded around her not only as a witness but as someone who served in the U.S. Air Force and Army National Guard.

“She saw a breakdown of the police. Three police officers were not acting correctly in front of that door,” Aaron said. “They weren’t acting like they were there to defend that door.”

Officers Kyle Yetter and Christopher Lanciano and Sgt. Timothy Lively faced an angry group of protesters demanding to go into the House Chamber and make their voices heard. The officers had no pepper spray or batons but were armed with service pistols.

The protester Zachary Alam vented his rage by punching the glass in the doors, including one punch that went between Lively and Lanciano’s heads. Alam eventually used a black riot helmet to smash the glass.

“They were just standing there, letting people punch around their heads, not doing anything to quell the violence or stop the violence and the people who were creating violence and havoc that day,” Aaron told The Epoch Times. “They weren’t stopping them. And then Ashli yelled at them to ‘call [expletive] help.’ ”

Ashli tried to intervene with Alam at one point, but he brushed her aside. She retreated to the north wall, where videos show she shouted against the violence.

“Once they start going full force on those doors, that’s when you hear Ashli screaming at them to stop,“ Aaron said. ”‘Stop! No, don’t! Stop! Wait!’ And that was when it had to have been — just knowing Ash, it had to have been that moment. She’s like, ‘What the [expletive] is going on? What is happening right now?’ ”

It was at that point that Byrd shot Ashli.

Aaron Babbitt said he fully believes that justice is coming in his wife’s case.

“Yeah, I’m confident we’re gonna get there,” he said. “Yeah, I will. I will. I’ll go down trying.”

“I’ve sacrificed a lot. But I’m willing to do that for her. This is my hill to die on.”

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