US Olympic swim champion Keller among Capitol invaders, say reports

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Nevin Al Sukari – Sana'a – Supporters of US President Donald Trump occupy the US Capitol Building in Washington, US, January 6, 2021. — Thomas P. Costello/USA TODAY via Reuters

WASHINGTON, Jan 13 — Two-time US Olympic swim champion Klete Keller was identified among a mob that broke into the US Capitol last week in a deadly insurrection, according to multiple reports yesterday.

The New York Times (NYT) and SwimSwam, a swimming news website, reported on Keller being among the supporters of President Donald Trump who fought their way into the Capitol last Wednesday in a violent election protest.

Video posted by conservative website Townhall captured images apparently of 6ft 6in (1.98m) Keller wearing a US Olympic team jacket inside the Capitol Rotunda as police were trying to clear people from the area.

NYT reported that several unnamed former teammates and coaches identified Keller while SwimSwam said at least 12 people within the sport had identified Keller.

No video showed Keller doing anything violent, NYT said, although simply being there opens the door for federal unlawful entry and disorderly conduct charges.

NYT said Keller’s deleted social media accounts included pro-Trump messaging.

Keller, 38, was a US gold-medal 4×200-metre relay teammate of swim legend Michael Phelps at the 2004 Athens and 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Keller also took silver in the same event in the 2000 Sydney Games and was a 400m bronze medalist both in Australia and four years later in Greece.

NYT reported that Keller had recently worked as a real estate agent in Colorado Springs, home of the US Olympic Committee. — AFP

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