Transcript for A Black Capitol Police officer’s story of the Jan. 6 riot
Welcome the soul of a nation. I'm sterling K brown and tonight and for the next few weeks we will take you on the journey across America. From the pulpit to the sound stage from the coasts through the kitchen you see what I mean by that later. We did to explore the authentic lives and experiences of black folks in this country. Tonight's theme. Reckoning it's the word we've all been hearing a lot of lately. What has America really moved into a moment of racial recommend. Tonight we're gonna hear from the woman who led a city to pass the first policy to fund reparations in America. Talk about what reckon things look like at the movies. And John Legend gets lifted. Our first story walks in the large shoes of officer Harry done. The six foot seven black man who along with his fellow capitol police officers found himself at the heart of January's brutal insurrection at the capitol. Left to confront the question many of us have asked. Is this America. And warning. This segment contains strong language. He sits down with an ABC's Chief Justice correspondent. Pierre Thomas. I I wanted to be a police officer. Song as a kid. Everybody I think it's ingrained in used to. Wanna help can be a good person at that each was there's something about. Capitol police in particular or acknowledges that allowed trustees within the an opportunity to working. At the capitol. First time a win and lose. When I got hired it's and beautiful building is robustly so I guess it's incredible. I grew up in central Virginia and father who could barely read mother clean white folks' houses. And I'm on national TV in a walking in the capital and I'm like. It's hard to not. B and all of that PC. Let's go to. January 6. What's the first moment. Did you began to get a sense that something is off kilter here. Our room we. Would towed to. Give helmets and riot helmets. No with new. Express his continues to grow and grow and broke. We'll be easy CC. Of people from triumph legs confederate flags. Early you do not news it's. Walk yeah entry. We've fourth with these people. Who were prepared for a fight. They had a body armor two way radios tactical gear bulletproof vests and they were ready to go. At one point were in the booting. The first encounter that I saw. This guy would have to lives matter flag. And sits with a guy. So cute you know and so here with that slaves. And as we had guys kept walking by. The other one poured out his day at school but instead trust me understand we're doing this for you but he. Good can be. They caught us trade. Barbara Ryan good trip and Bob yeah. And knocked. So I encountered a group 3040 people. They just started talking to me they were saying out so Biden did not win the election. And nobody voted for him. So I took the bait. And I had OK we're Romeo I voted for Joseph Biden is my boat and I count and then. The guy. And his girlfriend sit on a pink meg sure. Today. I voted for Joseph Biden guys. Hate everybody has voted for Joseph Biden BC you. So the crowd join everybody cut everybody joined in with them. It didn't register with me at the time. That I was. Target due. To some racist attacked. You know I grew up. In the south. Pumping column that word. The words of weapons. As a weapon to inflict psychological damage. As a word to inflict physical that was you feel some Connell way about it he wants is said to you. Unit capital defending the capital. And some power raced seeped into that took. You know everybody wants to say that. Who is about politics and everything. But it was a large number of people in that crowd. Go where races. They Fortis. Do you confederate flags indeed US capitol. For people that. Talk about the confederate flag in the confederacy and say it was noble in this heritage. I have a completely different fact based response. Traders. Treason. He lost. So many people don't even know what that flag means. It represents a call treasures its gift of racism. So we seen. Other agencies moving to the building game. Clearing out areas and I'm exhausted must search drenched in sweat. Pepper spraying. A got blood and councilman knuckles. Let's head down and the the rotunda. Could've talked about earlier the company news just and wrong. But this time you look. This cloud of smoke the reviewed the rotunda the pent up cold of the American democracy. And I said now with our good friend of mine. So what the hell happened. And to start to crowd. And it's a little. Call it. Couple dozen times today. Taken this building. Is this America. It seems like. That original sin. Of this country it always seems to sway record widened. Why can't we escaped death. 'cause. This is America at. It shouldn't be this way. A lot of my white officers' union coworkers. Eating cookie call it. So we all for the same battles but they were different. It's a tough it's a tough balance that being a black man. In a black police officer. I see a man who fought. To do his job. Who fought. For democracy. The word patriotism is gone around all the time this country. Black people in particular we often don't get the credit we're due for being his patriotic or that we are. Grandfather it World War I came home to segregation. He fought in World War II saying she'll come home segregation. And I think Doc Rivers said. Something to be effective. We love our country when it doesn't love us back sometimes when you think of the word patriotism. As a black player what do you think. Those terrorists on the six. They said that they were pitches. Self proclaimed patriots so I don't wanna use up won't use the word pitching it. I do not want to be associated with them at all. People get anything out of this interview. It was real people in that building defending. The congress. And democracy real people rookie not. The police. Real people. Real Americans. You know what that message to be known that we fought hard. To defend democracy. And protect each other. And I went that point to be known that I'm proud of them and we fought really it.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.