MacFarlane: Klete Keller, Prosecutors Close to Plea Deal for Jan. 6 Involvement

Scott MacFarlane of NBC4 News in Washington, D.C., is reporting that former Olympic swimmer Klete Keller is nearing a plea deal with prosecutors for his role in the January 6 insurrection of the U.S. Capitol.

According to MacFarlane, both prosecutors and Keller’s defense lawyer have confirmed the offer of a plea deal, and prosecutors say that they expect Keller to accept the deal.

Keller originally pleaded not guilty to the 7 charges he’s facing in federal court.

Sentencing for others involved have ranged, with some of the primary participants expected to face years in prison. The first person sentenced was a 49-year old Indiana woman who according to prosecutors was in the Capitol for about 10 minutes and didn’t engage in any violent conduct or damage any property. She pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of illegal protest and was sentenced to three years of probation, 120 hours of community service, and $500 in restitution.

The first person sentenced to prison time in mid-July was Paul Allard Hodgkins after pleading guilty to one felony count of entering the Capitol to obstruct Congress after being recorded inside the Senate chamber, though according to prosecutors he too was not violent and did not cause any damage.

On January 6th, supporters of President Donald Trumpwho lost the 2020 presidential election, broke into the United States Capitol Building and clashed with police. The riot happened as Congress was tallying electoral votes in last November’s election, in which President-elect Joe Biden defeated Trump.

Multiple people within the swimming community identified Keller in video footage of the mob of people who had broken into the Capitol Rotunda. The 6’6″ Keller stood out in videos due to his height, and because he appears to be wearing his U.S. Olympic gear in the video. Keller represented Team USA in three Olympic Games: 2000, 2004, and 2008.

Publicly-available footage of Keller in the U.S. Capitol did not show him causing any damage or participating in violence. At one point, he found himself up against police, but appeared with his arms up in a passive position. Most of the footage shows Keller gazing up at the Capitol Rotunda.

Keller’s charges include:

  • Civil disorder
  • Obstruction of an official proceeding, and aiding and abetting
  • Entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds
  • Disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds
  • Impeding passage through the Capitol Grounds or buildings
  • Parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building

After he was first charged, Keller turned himself in to federal authorities on January 14th, 2021. He was released without bail, agreeing to not return to Washington D.C. prior to the presidential inauguration of President Biden on January 21. He was also required to not possess firearms and retained the ability to travel from Colorado to visit his children in North Carolina.

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Distance Per Stroke
1 month ago

Brian Sicknick was not killed in a mob.

Edit: Article no longer says it.

Last edited 1 month ago by Distance Per Stroke
1 month ago

Hopefully, Klete will not have to serve time. If he does, I’ll be the first to contribute to his prison commissary account. Hopefully, others will see fit to support this great Olympic champion and true American patriot.

Last edited 1 month ago by Guerra
M d e
Reply to  Guerra
1 month ago

Seems unlikely he serves time right?

I get that some act like it’s the worst thing that has ever happened (and some act like it was no big deal at all), but he wasn’t personally responsible for any damage or injury right, and he turned himself in immediately?

Seems like some combination of fine, community service and suspended sentence would be likely.

Reply to  Guerra
1 month ago

Nothing says “true American patriot” like breaking the record of 230 years of a peaceful transfer of power.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  ACC
1 month ago

I mean hey there are tons of statutes for and roads named after literal traitors, so like. Not the craziest thing that could happen.

Reply to  ACC
1 month ago

Exactly. Super disappointed in Klete. America is more than a xenophobic capitalism based on outdated elitism.

Reply to  ACC
1 month ago

The term “patriot” has been repeatedly used throughout US history by domestic conspiracy theorists and violent militia to describe and justify their actions. History has never been kind to these self-described patriots, but they never seem to reflect on this before using the term again….

Reply to  ACC
1 month ago

I know this isn’t the point, but it always bugs me when people say the US has had that long of a streak of peaceful transitions. It’s like, we just gonna ignore the direct consequences of the Election of 1860? Ok.

Reply to  Guerra
1 month ago

“true American patriot?”

Reply to  Guerra
1 month ago

Just fyi you will want to check how much you can actually send. Once you go over a certain amount they take a large percentage of it and apply it to court and other legal fees.

Reply to  Xman
1 month ago


Reply to  Guerra
1 month ago

I’ll chip in for a slim jim

Time For Barta To Go
Reply to  Guerra
1 month ago

Patriots typically don’t storm the buildings and grounds where civil democracy is practiced. Vigorous debate? Yep. Voting/campaigning for a cause? For sure. Storming buildings and grounds. Ah, no.

Reply to  Time For Barta To Go
1 month ago

We’re living in a horrible time of censorship. If you haven’t noticed, our country is in deep doo doo.

Reply to  Guerra
1 month ago

I’m with you Guerra.

1 month ago

At least there is no footage of him wearing his olympic warm up in the Capitol on Jan. 6th. That could be bad

Corn Pop
Reply to  Lpman
1 month ago

Pantomime. Everybody round the world laughing their heads off.

Last edited 1 month ago by Corn Pop
1 month ago

A year in the slammer sounds about right

1 month ago

Braden, can we get a Pick’Em for Klete Keller’s sentence?

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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