The news came as prosecutors on Tuesday tried to ban the Utah provocateur — a self-styled anti-Trump activist who they allege infiltrates protests to cause chaos and record video footage — from accessing social media, according to Politico.
Sullivan maintains that he is a journalist for his website Insurgence USA — and his defense attorney filed invoices for the $35,000 that NBC News and CNN each apparently paid for rights to use the videos.
But the feds allege in a criminal complaint that Sullivan was actively participating in and encouraging the siege.As throngs of President Donald Trump supporters stormed the building, Sullivan helped one of the rioters scale a wall leading up to an entrance of the Capitol, an affidavit alleges.
John Sullivan maintains that he is a journalist for his website Insurgence USA.
He then entered the Capitol through a window that had been smashed by a rioter.
As he recorded footage inside the building, Sullivan allegedly said, “we gotta get this s—t burned.”
“It’s our house, m—rf—kers. We are getting this s–t,” he added.
Still recording, Sullivan moved with the crowd to outside the Speaker’s Lobby, where rioters faced off with police officers who were securing a doorway.
Supporters of Donald Trump protest outside the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
He then captured an officer fatally shoot rioter Ashli Babbitt as she attempted to climb through a broken window that was being guarded by the officers — footage he sold to several news networks.
“On January 6th, CNN was contacted by a reputable agent regarding an eye-witness video from the Capitol Hill riots. The company entered into a one-week agreement for use of 44-seconds of key content, which was attributed to the witness on air. When his role in the event was later called into question, the company informed staff to cease all use of the video,” a CNN spokesperson said.
Sullivan was arrested soon after the riot and indicted by a grand jury last week on six charges, including obstruction of an official proceeding, civil disorder, and disorderly conduct.
In a court hearing Tuesday, a magistrate judge in Washington blocked prosecutors’ request that Sullivan be barred from his social media accounts while he awaits trial for the riot, according to Politico.
The judge, however, did order Sullivan to cease work for Insurgence USA, and said he could not use social media to incite riots or violence.
A representative for NBC did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Author: Ben Feuerherd