ALABAMA (WHNT) – In an interview with our news partners at AL.com, Senator Richard Shelby recounted his memories of the ‘mob attack’ on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Shelby, who is retiring after 44 years in office, told AL.com that he hopes Americans have “learned a lot” from the events of Jan. 6, 2021, and the events that have since unraveled.

Months after the election on Nov. 3, 2020, a group of thousands of Donald Trump supporters gathered at the U.S. Capitol and began to riot. The mob was aiming to keep the former president in power by preventing a joint session of Congress from counting the electoral college votes. Several people were injured, and four responding officers committed suicide.

“Were we concerned? Yeah, we were concerned about the nation first,” Shelby said. “We were safe, basically.”

Many members of Congress had to flee for their safety, with Shelby being escorted out of the building through an underground tunnel.

“I never thought I would see that in America,” he told AL.com. “I never thought that would happen, that a mob would storm the U.S. Capitol while the House and Senate were counting votes for the election… electoral votes. Never did it cross my mind like that. But it was real.”

In the interview from his Senate office in Washington D.C., Shelby recalled the moments as the mob began to build and move to the Senate chamber. And the moment he was escorted out of the building. He was with then-Vice President Mike Pence, who was presiding over the electoral count.

Shelby told AL.com that he believes the FBI, the U.S. Capitol police force and the National Guard have enough resources to protect the Capitol going forward.

People from several cities in North Alabama, including Falkville, Madison and Arab, and one man from Columbiana, have been charged in relation to the attacks on the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.