The mob of Trump supporters pressed through police barricades, broke windows and battered their way with metal poles through entrances to the Capitol. Then, stunningly, they breached the "People’s House” itself, forcing masked police officers to draw their guns to keep the insurgents off the chamber floor.

"I thought we’d have to fight our way out,” said Rep. Jason Crow, a Colorado Democrat and a former Army Ranger in Iraq, who found himself captive in the House chamber.

What unfolded at that point, at times on national television, was a tableau of violence and mayhem that shocked the nation, one of the most severe breaches of the Capitol since the British invaded during the War of 1812 and burned it down.