FBI ‘working around the clock’ using facial recognition to identify Capitol riot suspects

BOSTON — The FBI has more than 100,000 pieces of video evidence to sift through from the attack on the Capitol building last Wednesday.

“My heart goes out to them, they’re working around the clock right now,” said Kurt Vied, managing director of operations at Signal 88 Security. “I remember what those days are like.”

Vied knows what it’s like to identify criminals from surveillance video after he worked as a state trooper and Naval intelligence officer, both for 20 years.

He says it’ll take the FBI thousands of hours to go through all the video evidence from the attack on the Capitol last week.

“There’s so much footage that they’re going to be overwhelmed, and they are overwhelmed, they were overwhelmed during the Boston bombing and that was one scene with two people,” said Vied. “You can imagine the dozens and dozens of people that they have to look at.”

Similar to the hunt for the Boston bombers, the FBI could use facial recognition software to identify people in the mob, which is now considered a crime scene.

The big difference, Vied says, is there are so many people who will likely be charged with a crime for simply being there.

“These aren’t light charges that these people are facing, even at the very light end of the spectrum, these people are facing some serious charges,” said Vied.

“If any of those roads lead back to people in Massachusetts, I fully expect those folks will get arrested and prosecuted as they should be,” said Gov. Charlie Baker in a news conference Tuesday.

Gov. Baker says both local and federal officers in Massachusetts have every means necessary to identify those responsible for this insurrection if they live here.

“One of the reasons why I was so aggressive about maintaining access to that facial recognition technology was because I believed it was an important tool for dealing with issues like the one that took place in Washington last week,” said Baker.

Although the FBI has a lot to go through, Vied says it won’t be too difficult to find these people.

He says the FBI can trace their phones to the Capitol, plus there’s always social media.

“These people posted on Facebook and Twitter, their own accounts showing them in the Capitol. I mean next to their name under their Facebook page, that’s pretty damning evidence,” said Vied.

If you happen to recognize anyone from those videos at the Capitol last week, you should notify your local law enforcement.