In a sign of how contentious things have become, this week an effort by union officials to schedule a “vote of no confidence” against the department’s top three leaders triggered a round of recriminations from officers who criticized the timing of the move, claiming it was inappropriate and overshadowed the memorial services this week for their slain colleague, Brian Sicknick, whose remains lay in honor at the Capitol this week.
The union pushed off the vote until at least next week. The no-confidence vote is aimed at the department’s acting chief, Yogananda Pittman, as well as two of her top deputies, according to a copy of a memo and flyer obtained by CNN. Pittman, who spent 14 months as an assistant chief, took over the department after former Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund announced his resignation the day after the riot.
“The officers are angry, and I don’t blame them,” said Gus Papathanasiou, chairman of the union representing Capitol Police officers. “The entire executive team failed us, and they must be held accountable. Their inaction cost one officer his life and we have almost 140 responding officers injured. They have a lot to atone for.”