The woman shot dead by police as she stormed the US Capitol building has been named as Ashli Babbitt, a Donald Trump supporter from San Diego, California who had served in the United States Air Force.
Mrs Babbitt, 35, who undertook four tours of duty in 14-years according to her husband Aaron, was shot in the chest by a plain clothes officer after trying to enter the House chamber.
Her husband told KUSI news she was a "great patriot to all who knew her".
During chaotic scenes inside the Capitol building, Mrs Babbitt was part of an angry mob which ran amok, attempting to derail the certification of Joe Biden as the next President of the United States.
"I really don't know why she decided to do this," her mother-in law told Fox News.
Witnesses say that she was shot while attempting to climb through a barricaded window and enter the congressional chambers.
Video footage of the event shows a fellow rioter warning that the police were armed, but it came too late and she was shot just after 3pm and rushed to hospital where she later died.
Mrs Babbitt, who owned a Swimming pool repair and services business with her second husband, travelled to Washington without him.
He only found out she had been shot when he saw the images of her on television.
A police investigation is now underway into the circumstances of Mrs Babbitt’s death.
Her brother-in-law, Justin Jackson, told NBC 7 he had been in contact with Washington police, but said they didn't tell him exactly what had led to the shooting.
He said: "Ashli was both loyal as well as extremely passionate about what she believed in. She loved this country and felt honoured to have served in our Armed Forces. Please keep her family in your thoughts and respect their privacy during this time."
On her Twitter page, Ms Babbitt described herself as a veteran and a Libertarian, adding: “I love my dude, my dog and above all, my country.”
She had shared conspiracy theories pedalled by QAnon - a group who falsely believe that the US government is controlled by a "deep state" cabal of anti-Trump Satanist paedophiles.
"Nothing will stop us....they can try and try and try but the storm is here and it is descending upon DC in less than 24 hours....dark to light!", she wrote in a tweet on Tuesday.
Nothing will stop us....they can try and try and try but the storm is here and it is descending upon DC in less than 24 hours....dark to light!
— CommonAshSense (@Ashli_Babbitt) January 5, 2021
MS Babbitt lashed out at government-enforced COVID-19 restrictions on her Twitter page.
At the pool cleaning service that public records indicate she ran with her husband in Spring Valley, California, a sign was pasted to the door on Thursday, reading: 'MASK FREE AUTONOMOUS ZONE BETTER KNOWN AS AMERICA ... tyranny, lawlessness, disrespect and hate for your fellow man will not be tolerated.'
There was also a picture of California Governor Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, with a slash through it.
MS Babbitt had travelled to Washington with friends to join Wednesday's rally, her husband, Aaron, told Fox 5 News in San Diego. He said he sent her a text message checking her status about 30 minutes before the shooting but never heard back.
"She loved her country and she was doing what she thought was right to support her country, joining up with like-minded people that also love their president and their country," her husband told Fox 5 News. "She was voicing her opinion and she got killed for it."
Ms Babbitt served in the U.S. Air Force as a senior airman while on active duty from 2004 to 2008, the Air Force said in a statement. She also served in the Air Force Reserve between 2008 and 2010, and in the Air National Guard from 2010 until 2016, the statement said.
She served in the military with her ex-husband, Timothy McEntee, and did at least one tour in Iraq, Sean McEntee, her former brother-in-law, said in a telephone interview, adding he felt "shock and sadness" at the news of her death.
Ms Babbitt posted a picture of herself on Twitter at a Trump boat rally in September, smiling with another person, both of them wearing tops bearing the slogans and imagery of QAnon.
She also took to Twitter to express enthusiasm for guns and the US-Mexico border wall that Mr Trump vowed to build, saying in a video posted in 2018 that she was concerned migrants were bringing drugs over the border "in droves."
Robin Babbitt, who identified herself as Ashli Babbitt's mother-in-law on Twitter on Thursday, wrote: "Can't stop crying. ... She was such a wonderful kind person, and a serious military woman. Strong, Smart, Kind."
Washington police chief Robert Contee said three other people, one woman and two men, had died on Wednesday in the area around the Capitol, but did not link those deaths to the violence.
Each of the three "appeared to have suffered medical emergencies which resulted in their deaths," Contee told reporters.
Contee said 52 people had been arrested Wednesday, 26 of them on the grounds of the Capitol, for curfew violations, unlawful entry and weapons charges.
Fourteen police were injured, one seriously after he was pulled into a crowd and assaulted, he added.
He also said two pipe bombs had been discovered near the Capitol, one at democratic Party offices and the other at Republican Party offices.
In addition, a vehicle was discovered parked on Capitol grounds with a long gun and Molotov cocktails inside.
Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser announced an extension of the city's state of emergency for 15 days through the January 20 presidential inauguration of Joe Biden, amid fears Trump and his supporters will continue to threaten violence over their unsupported claims that Biden's election win was fraudulent.
"I know that I speak for all of us when I say that we saw an unprecedented attack on our American democracy incited by the United States president, and he must be held accountable," Bowser said.