Michael Fanone, a former DC police officer who was attacked at the Capitol riot, said he's 'broke' and that speaking out about January 6 'destroyed my career'

Michael Fanone
Former Washington Metropolitan Police Department officer Michael Fanone listens as the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol holds a hearing at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, July 21, 2022.AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite
  • Former DC Metropolitan Police officer Michael Fanone is set to release a memoir on October 11.

  • He told Rolling Stone he did the book in part because talking about January 6 destroyed his career.

  • Fanone was assaulted during the riot and has repeatedly pushed back against those who downplay it.

Former Washington, DC, Metropolitan Police officer Michael Fanone has frequently spoken out against the January 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol — and at great personal expense, according to him.

"Mike Fanone is broke. I'm pretty sure that's why people do things like this," Fanone told Rolling Stone, speaking of himself in the third person while explaining part of his reasoning for writing a memoir: "I said the things that I said for free and fucking destroyed my career, made my job untenable, and then tried to make hard lemonade out of lemons."

Fanone's memoir, "Hold the Line: The Insurrection and One Cop's Battle for America's Soul," is set to be released on October 11.

Fanone was among the officers defending the Capitol when it was stormed by a mob of former President Donald Trump's supporters. Prosecutors said Fanone was repeatedly stun-gunned, beaten with a flagpole, and dragged down several steps. He had a heart attack and a concussion as a result of the assault and said he was left with a traumatic brain injury and PTSD.

"I experienced the most brutal, savage hand-to-hand combat of my entire life, let alone my policing career, which spans almost two decades," he told CNN in April 2021. "This was nothing I had ever thought would be a part of my law-enforcement career."

Four men were charged with assaulting Fanone, one of whom, Kyle Young, was sentenced on Tuesday to 86 months in prison.

Fanone has repeatedly pushed back against Republicans who have sought to downplay the attack on the Capitol. But as he was speaking out — including after he testified before Congress in July 2021 — Fanone said he knew he was risking his career.

"I knew pretty shortly after my congressional testimony that my career in law enforcement was fucking over with," Fanone told Rolling Stone, adding after his testimony "the criticism from within the [police] department went from quiet whispers to screams and yells."

He had planned to return to full duty after recovering from his injuries, but instead, on December 31, 2021, he resigned with a note to his supervisor that said "Go fuck yourselves," Rolling Stone reported.

"Then I was like, 'Oh, shit. I'm not going to be a police officer anymore,'" he said.

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