Ex-Salt Lake City police officer arrested in Capitol breach

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah. (AP) — A former Salt Lake City police officer was arrested Friday in the U.S. Capitol breach that happened while Congress was certifying the Electoral College vote.

Michael Lee Hardin, 50, of Kaysville, Utah, was arrested on charges of entering and remaining in the Capitol, a restricted building, and participating in disorderly conduct, the FBI said in a statement.

Hardin retired from the Salt Lake police department in 2017, said spokesperson Detective Marie Stewart. Court records don’t indicate if he has an attorney.

An anonymous person provided a tip to the FBI that Hardin was inside the Capitol on Jan. 6, court documents show. In court documents, the person said Hardin sent text messages that said, “We stormed the Capitol, I am in here now!” and “I know you don’t like Trump, but he is the rightful President!”.

A photograph of Hardin shows him wearing a beanie with the word “TRUMP” embroidered in the front while he is standing next to a bust of Abraham Lincoln inside the Capitol, according to arrest documents.

Hardin is the second Utah resident known to have been charged in the breach.

The other is John Sullivan, a self-described journalist, and liberal activist. Sullivan released footage to the FBI that showed him entering the Capitol on Jan. 6 and roaming the building, according to arrest documents. His footage included a video of Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt of San Diego being shot by Capitol Police outside the Speaker’s Lobby, according to court documents.

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