Olympic gold medalist swimmer Klete Keller reportedly was amongst the rioters at the US Capitol protest last week according to media reports. Hundreds of individuals, including many wearing pro-Donald Trump clothing, overwhelmed security at the Capitol last week, while the Congress were certifying Joe Biden's election victory. The clash saw 5 people killed, including a Capitol police officer.
According to a report by swimming news website SwimSwam, Klete Keller was identified as being among the Donald Trump supporters inside the US Capitol last week. The 38-year-old was identified by at least a dozen people within the sport and was reportedly wearing a US Olympic team jacket inside the building after reviewing screenshots and videos from the US Capitol protest. In one of the videos, which was taken by a reporter from conservative news outlet Townhall, a man identified as Keller is seen among the crowd that police officers are trying to push toward the US Capitol exits.
Wow. Olympic swimmer Klete Keller is named as one of rioters at the Capitol. So many arrests around the country today including an OH school therapist. pic.twitter.com/txhg7RoTGO— Deborah Roberts (@DebRobertsABC) January 12, 2021
The reports, however, claim that while Keller was seen at the US Capitol, the videos do not show any violence on the part of the 38-year-old. According to the New York Times, the two-time Olympic gold medallist has deleted his social media accounts, several of which the publication said had included a stream of pro-Trump messaging in recent years. The FBI has been asking the public for assistance to locate individuals who were part of pro-Donald Trump riots, and Phoenix resident Jake Angeli, who donned an animal fur hat topped with horns, surrendered himself. USA Swimming, the governing body of the Olympic sport in the country, said it was not aware whether Keller was at the Capitol and 'cannot confirm its accuracy'.
Trump supporters inside the Capitol Rotunda. pic.twitter.com/Run5MwPnTx— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) January 6, 2021
Klete Keller is a five-time Olympic medalist who held off Australian great Ian Thorpe on the anchor leg of the 4x200m freestyle relay at the 2004 Athens Games to win gold for the United States. He teamed up with swimming great Michael Phelps and made three appearances at the Olympics, having also won the gold medal in Beijing in 2008. He also won back-to-back bronze medals in the 400 freestyle at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and 2004 Games, including setting the American record (3:44.11) in Athens, while bagging the silver in the 4x200m freestyle relay in Sydney.