Police Officer Eugene Goodman, who protected lawmakers from violent insurgents in the U.S. Capitol in D.C., on January 6 that left five people dead, was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal.
The Senate ended the impeachment trial on Friday (February 12) with a unanimous vote to award the medal to Goodman, the highest honor congress can bestow, according to the Washington Post. He was greeted in the Senate chamber on Friday with a standing ovation.
“Here in this trial, we saw a new video, powerful video showing calmness under pressure, his courage in the line of duty, his foresight in the midst of chaos, and his willingness to make himself a target of the mob’s rage so that others might reach safety,” Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) said before recognizing Goodman, who was sitting in the back of the chamber, writes the Post.
He also added that he and his colleague’s gratitude goes out to all of the law enforcement officers that were protecting the Capitol on January 6.
Thank you, Officer Goodman.— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) February 12, 2021
I just put forward legislation to award him the Congressional Gold Medal—Congress's highest honor.
It passed the Senate.
Our heartfelt gratitude goes to him, the Capitol Police, Metro Police, and teams that were protecting the Capitol on January 6.
Officer Goodman, who encountered a throng of angry Trump supporters, was seen on a viral video as he diverted the mob away from the Senate chamber, which was unguarded and could have led them directly to lawmakers.
He has been hailed as a hero for his actions. He is credited with helping to avert more serious damage and possibly injury or loss of life when he lured insurrectionists away from lawmakers. Five people died as a result of the early January insurrection on the capitol and many more were injured, some seriously.
In a previous statement, USCP Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman said lawmakers and the public can’t take for granted the bravery of members of the Capitol Police. ”We have too many heroes to count and we are humbled Congress may recognize them in this way,” she relayed. “From the cards and letters of support we've received from around this great country to this incredible award, we are deeply humbled and appreciative."
The vote over the award also comes just days after never-before-seen footage of Goodman leading Sen. Mitt Romney away from the pro-Trump rioters was presented by Senate impeachment managers.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced legislation the week of February 7 to award the Congressional Gold Medal to all the law enforcement officers, who risked their lives on January 6.
Photo: Brandon Bell-Pool/Getty Images