'This is un-American': Wisconsin native and Congressman describes first-hand the riot inside the Capitol

Posted at 10:15 PM, Jan 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-07 23:15:05-05

DODGE COUNTY — He's a Texas congressman who grew up in Dodge County, and on Wednesday he found himself helping Capitol Police hold back rioters.

Troy Nehls comes from a family law enforcement in Dodge county. He tells us how he jumped into action when heard people trying to bust down the door to the house chamber.

"A few minutes later a gentleman got up and stated, ‘the Capitol, the Capitol building has been breached,’” Nehls says.

On just his third day as a Congressman, former Juneau, Wisconsin native Troy Nehls found himself locked down on the House floor as rioters tried to break down the doors.

"And that's when the glass started breaking and initially, I really thought it was gunfire at first. You can see in pictures we got down for a moment, but that we realized - moments later - no that's not gunfire. They used some type of sharp, blunt object to bust the glass,” he says.

As the chaos continued, the Texas Republican transitions from lawmaker to former law enforcement officer.

Videos and photos taken during the riot show Congressman Nehls, in a blue shirt, as armed Capitol Police barricade a door to hold off protesters.

"You know when I saw them display their firearms, point their firearms, at protesters, all the while I'm trying to deescalate the situation, telling the individuals behind the door, ‘what you are doing is wrong. This is un-American. This is not how we should be handling business.’”

Nehls was a county sheriff in the Houston, Texas area. His big brother Todd and his father were sheriffs in Dodge County. Many in his family were in Washington, D.C. for his swearing-in.

When asked to describe the response from the Nehls family in Dodge County, he says: “I've received an enormous amount of support from my family in Wisconsin, and as well my beautiful wife here and my and three children.”

Nehls says it's time for the country to heal and come together as a new president is about to be sworn.

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