A staffer working for Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) on June 16 called the U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) on the nine Stephen Colbert staffers who were subsequently arrested, according to USCP Chief Thomas Manger.
The staffer, whose name was redacted, heard a man shouting outside his office, according to a letter from Manger to Reps. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) and Jim Jordan (R-Ohio).
“Do you remember me? Do you remember me? It’s me. We’re going to leave something under your door,” the man shouted, the staffer told the police. The man also banged on the door to Rep. Lauren Boebert’s (R-Colo.) office, which is adjacent to Bowman’s office.
The staffer said he was very concerned. He locked his office door and called the USCP emergency number.
Officers rushed to the scene, inside the Rayburn House Office Building, and found seven individuals. Jake Plunkett, senior producer and director for Colbert’s CBS show, was among them.
Two additional individuals returned to the area about 20 minutes later. They told officers they had been wandering around the building.
None of the group had congressional press identifications, and there were no congressional staffers with them. That meant they were illegally inside the building.
Spokespersons for Bowman and Boebert did not respond to requests for comment.
One of the officers who responded to the scene recognized the group. He had stopped them earlier in the day, Manger said.
The officer said he was patrolling in the Cannon House Office Building and noticed the group trying to stop members to conduct interviews. The officer found the group lacked press credentials and had no staff members with them. He told them that the group could not be inside without a staff escort and removed them from the building.
The group was escorted into yet another House office building, the Longworth House Office Building, by a staffer with Rep. Jake Auchincloss’s (D-Mass.) office, earlier in the day, an investigation found. The group was “improperly allowed to remain in the building after the staffer had left them,” according to Manger, and had apparently gone into a different building.
All of the buildings are connected to the U.S. Capitol.
There were no signs that a staffer with Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) let the group into a building, as had been asserted previously.
Plunkett identified the group as working for Colbert and Robert Smigel, another member of the group, said the group “was pretending to leave notes under the Member’s doors as part of the skits, but did not actually leave anything.”
The note was an invitation to a cocaine orgy, according to the interviews.
Because the group violated building regulations, they were taken into custody.
An investigation later found that the group was inside the buildings on June 15 but had a staff escort at all times. It also uncovered that Plunkett had also been told by the longtime head of the House Radio/TV Gallery that his attempts to secure press credentials were denied because the group didn’t meet the standards and that his group must not enter or remain in the buildings without an escort.
Plunkett and CBS did not respond to requests for comment.
A CBS spokesperson told The Epoch Times in June that the group’s interviews “were authorized and pre-arranged through Congressional aides of the members interviewed” and acknowledged the group remained in the building after the interviews were over. Colbert joked about the situation.
The group was arrested and charged with unlawful entry. Details of what happened were presented to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.
Prosecutors announced this week that they were dropping all the charges.
“The Office would be required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that these invited guests were guilty of the crime of unlawful entry because their escort chose to leave them unattended. We do not believe it is probable that the Office would be able to obtain and sustain convictions on these charges,” a spokesperson for the office told The Epoch Times in an email.
The USCP said that it respected the decision, but Manger commented separately on the move in his letter to Davis and Jordan.
“It is unfortunate that despite all of the evidence the Department presented, including that the group or its leader had been told several times that they could not be in the buildings without an escort, that the U.S. Attorney’s office declined to prosecute any members of the group for Unlawful Entry,” he said.
On Fox News on Tuesday night, Jordan said that “this is the double standard that we see so often from the left and from this town.”