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A source close to former Trump Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations Tony Ornato says he did not brief Jan. 6 Committee witness Cassidy Hutchinson on one of the major allegation she made to the committee Tuesday.
Hutchinson, a former top aide to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, testified to lawmakers Tuesday that Ornato told her former President Donald Trump repeatedly demanded that the Secret Service take him to the Capitol on January 6. Ornato further told Hutchinson, according to her, that Trump lunged at a Secret Service agent and tried to grab the wheel of a presidential SUV when agents would not allow that.
However, a source close to Ornato told Fox News that Ornato watched the hearing yesterday and was shocked when Cassidy made the allegation about the steering wheel.
Cassidy Hutchinson, former aide to chief of staff Mark Meadows, testified before the January 6 Committee Tuesday. (House Select Committee via AP)
Both Bobby Engel, the top agent on Trump’s Secret Service detail who was in the car, and Ornato, who was not in the car, testified to the January 6 Committee in private over the past year, the source close to Ornato said.
Engel and Ornato never brought up part about steering wheel, according to that source. Both want to testify on the record again and refute the part about Trump grabbing or trying to grab the wheel. The driver of the SUV, who is unnamed, will also cooperate with the committee.
A former aide to Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows told the January 6 Committee Tuesday that Trump insisted that he be taken to the Capitol as electoral votes were counted from the 2020 presidential election. ((AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File))
A source close to the USSS says Hutchinson was truthful when she said that Trump was furious inside the SUV. Trump did want to go to the Capitol on January 6 and was yelling and shouting. However, the steering wheel part is false, per this source.
Hutchinson also made several other allegations against Trump during her testimony, many of which Trump denied in a flurry of posts on his social network, Truth Social.
Cassidy Hutchinson, a former White House aide, said Tuesday that former President Donald Trump was told many of his supporters on the National Mall were armed, and that is why they did not come into his rally on the Ellipse. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
She told lawmakers that Trump demanded the the United States Secret Service get rid of magnetometers outside his rally so that more people could come in, despite being told they were not entering the rally because they were armed. Hutchinson also said she heard Meadows tell White House Counsel Pat Cipollone that Trump said former Vice President Mike Pence deserved chants of “Hang Mike Pence” from the mob.
Hutchinson also said Trump smashed a plate out of anger after former Attorney General Bill Barr said the Justice Department did not find significant fraud in the 2020 presidential election.
Fox News’ Kelly Laco contributed to this report.
David Spunt currently serves as a Washington D.C. based correspondent for FOX News Channel (FNC). He joined the network in December 2018.