by WorldTribune Staff, January 15, 2021
The Black Lives Matter activist who was seen on video breaching the U.S. Capitol and encouraging others to do the same on Jan. 6 has been arrested.
John Earle Sullivan was charged with being on restricted grounds, civil disorder, and violent entry and disorderly conduct, the Department of Justice said on Thursday.
Sullivan told The Epoch Times that he knew of plans to storm the Capitol, adding more evidence to the FBI’s report that the Jan. 6 siege on the Capitol was pre-planned.
Sullivan said he saw the plans on “underground chats and things like that” prior to Jan. 6 and said he posted information about the plans on his social media. Sullivan said he didn’t inform the law enforcement because “I’m not a snitch.”
Sullivan told U.S. Capitol Police officers to stand down so that they wouldn’t get hurt, according to the court filing.
He joined the crowd trying to open doors to another part of the Capitol, telling people “Hey guys, I have a knife” and asking them to let him get to the front. He did not make it to the doors. He later tried to get the officers guarding the Speaker’s Lobby to go home, telling them: “Bro, I’ve seen people out there get hurt.”
Videos showed Sullivan shouting as he and others break through a barricade: “There are so many people. Let’s go. This [Expletive] is ours! [Expletive] yeah. We accomplished this [expletive]. We did this together. [Expletive] yeah! We are all a part of this history. Let’s burn this [Expletive] down.”
He was later heard encouraging protesters to climb a wall to get to an entrance to the Capitol and was seen entering the building.
According to a court filing, Sullivan told FBI agents last week that he was at the Capitol when the breach happened. He said he entered through a window that had been broken out. He also said he was present when Ashli Babbitt, an Air Force veteran, was shot dead by a U.S. Capitol Police officer as she tried to climb into the House Speaker’s Lobby through a window.
During one conversation with others while inside, Sullivan said, “We gotta get this [expletive] burned.” At other times, he said, among other things, “it’s our house [expletive]” and “we are getting this [expletive].”
Jade Sacker, who provided CNN with footage of the Capitol siege, celebrated with Sullivan in a moment caught on tape. She agrees with Sullivan that it will be “the best film she ever made in her life” before asking him at the end of the video if he was recording. “I’ll delete that shit” Sullivan responds.
“You were right! We did it,” Sacker boasts. “Dude, I was trying to tell you. I couldn’t say much.”
Sullivan spoke to several media outlets after the breach, including CNN and ABC, told The Epoch Times that he took steps to blend in with the crowd so he didn’t “get beat up.” He said he’s known in the activist community as being a member of Antifa but denied being a member of the anarchist network.
Sullivan has posted in support of Black Lives Matter, frequently using the hashtag #blm. He leads a group called Insurgence USA, which says it was founded in the wake of the death of George Floyd.