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Former Utah speedskater gets six years in prison for role in Jan. 6 Capitol attack

Rioters at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington.
John Minchillo/AP
Rioters at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington.

A Salt Lake City man is facing years in prison for participating in the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.

John Sullivan, 29, of Salt Lake City, has now been sentenced for spreading violent anti-establishment rhetoric leading up to and during the Jan. 6, 2021, breach of the Capitol, according to prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Sullivan was outside the House Chamber on Jan. 6 encouraging rioters to break the glass on the door when a police officer shot and killed Ashli Babbit, one of seven people to die during the pro-Donald Trump protest.

Prosecutors said Sullivan’s goal was to cause pure chaos and disruption to the status quo.

The FBI arrested Sullivan in Salt Lake City a week after the insurrection. He was found guilty by a federal jury of multiple felony offenses, including obstructing an official proceeding, which in this case was the certification of the 2020 presidential election.

Last week a U.S. District Court judge sentenced him to six years in prison, along with three years of supervised release. Sullivan must also pay $2,000 in restitution.

The Utah resident had Olympic ambitions at one point, according to The Salt Lake Tribune. He finished 20th overall in the 2018 U.S. Olympic trials for speed skating in the 500 meter and 1500 meter events, failing to make the team.

Over 1,300 individuals have been charged for crimes related to the breach of the Capitol since the attack.