Repeated claims that District of Columbia police officer Michael Fanone was photographed carrying a Confederate flag inside of the US Capitol during the January 6 riot are false, according to Reuters, PolitiFact and other journalists.
Social media users claimed that DC police officer Michael Fanone was photographed carrying a Confederate flag inside of the US Capitol during the Jan. 6, 2021 riot.
Sean Hickman, a spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, DC, confirmed that the person in the photographs is “not Officer Fanone.” The man who was at the Capitol with a confederate flag has been identified as Kevin Seefried.
Fanone was one of the four police officers who told lawmakers on July 27, 2021, about their experience in the storming of the Capitol. He said was pulled into the crowd, beaten, shocked repeatedly with a Taser, robbed of his badge, and knocked unconscious, suffering a heart attack. Fanone said he heard a rioter say “kill him with his own gun.”
“That is not Officer Fanone,” said Sean Hickman, spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, DC, when asked about the second photograph showing Seefried.
Kevin Seefried, who was photographed carrying a Confederate flag in the US Capitol during the Jan. 6 riots in Washington, has been indicted by a grand jury on five counts related to obstruction, entering restricted property and disorderly conduct.
The two were identified, according to the affidavit, after a co-worker of Hunter Seefried told the FBI that Hunter had “bragged about being in the Capitol with his father on Jan. 6, 2021.”
Fanone was dragged into the crowd by rioters on the Capitol grounds that afternoon, the video footage from his body camera shows. The House select committee investigating the insurrection played the footage during his testimony, as Fanone talked about it. Fanone described to lawmakers his whereabouts throughout the day. He said he arrived at the Capitol around 3 pm.
But around the same time on Jan. 6, Seefried was inside the Capitol. According to court filings, Seefried confirmed in a voluntary interview with the FBI that he had entered the Senate building through a broken window at approximately 2:13 pm, and that he had brought a Confederate flag to Washington from his home in Delaware, where he usually displays it outside.