CLEVELAND — Northeast Ohio legal and political experts believe the shock waves from the Jan. 6 breach of the Capitol in Washington D.C. during the Electoral College confirmation will have an impact on how the United States is viewed worldwide for many years to come.
Baldwin Wallace University Political Science Professor Tom Sutton said the violence at the Capitol will trigger a full investigation and criminal charges for those involved in the breach and vandalism.
“This is unprecedented," Sutton said.
"I think you need the FBI to investigate fully what has happened, to identify the leaders of the protest, to prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law. We have trespassing, we have breaking and entering, we have destruction of federal property.”
Professor Jonathan Adler with the Case Western University School of Law said the breach at the Capitol has given our democracy a black-eye and will taint how other countries view our form of government.
"We have not seen this sort of actual breach, according to the Congressional Historian, since 1812,” Adler said.
"It appears the Capitol police were unprepared and did not anticipate something like this. It’s really embarrassing to see this sort of descent into chaos.” It’s understandable why Americans would be upset if they really believe there was massive fraud, but some protesters stepped way over the line."
“Those who stormed the Capitol broke into the Capitol, who vandalized the Capitol committed federal crimes, and there are quite a few federal crimes committed here including seditious conspiracy," Adler said.