Florida Man Dies While Awaiting Trial on Charges Related to Jan. 6 US Capitol Breach

A U.S. military veteran who was charged in the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol breach has died.

John Anderson, 61, died at a hospital on Sept. 21 in Jacksonville, Florida, according to family members and his lawyer. His cause of death has not been disclosed.

“My sweet, handsome husband went home to be with the Lord,” Anderson’s wife said, according to his lawyer, Marina Medvin.

Anderson’s wife is asking for prayers and privacy as she mourns the loss.

Anderson, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, was charged with seven counts, including civil disorder, interfering with law enforcement, and stealing government property.

Anderson was arrested in late February in St. Augustine and released pending trial about a week later.

Authorities said he was part of the crowd that tried entering the Capitol through a tunnel, clashing with officers in the process. But his lawyers said he did nothing wrong and was trapped by people pressing behind him.

Screenshots from surveillance video in the tunnel show Anderson was struck with a chemical substance let loose by a male in the crowd. Police officers later sprayed pepper spray, which also hit Anderson. He was assisted by officers through the tunnel after several minutes. Anderson said the officers saved his life.

Epoch Times Photo
John Anderson is seen outside the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 6, 2021. (FBI)
Epoch Times Photo
John Anderson is seen being pulled by police officers after being pepper sprayed near the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 6, 2021. (Courtesy of Marina Medvin)

But he also protested against the charges, which his lawyer says were not backed by evidence.

“John Anderson never hurt or touched a single police officer. The video evidence proves this,” Medvin said in an emailed statement. “John Anderson died an innocent man wrongfully accused.”

Before Anderson’s death, he and Medvin were preparing to reject a plea offer.

The government is preparing to dismiss the case against Anderson, according to his lawyer. That’s common practice, U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth said in a separate case this month.

Lamberth cited United States v. Pogue as he granted a motion for abatement from the government and dismissed the indictment against Joseph Barnes, a Texas resident, who died after getting into a vehicular accident. Barnes had also been charged in the Jan. 6 breach.

The government prosecutor leading prosecution against Anderson did not respond to a request for comment.

The court was informed Friday of Anderson’s death. Parties were ordered to file a joint status report by Nov. 8.

Zachary Stieber

Zachary Stieber

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Zachary Stieber covers U.S. news, including politics and court cases. He started at The Epoch Times as a New York City metro reporter.

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