March 2, 2021

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Armed man arrested near Capitol with unauthorized inauguration pass, 500 rounds of ammo – NBC News

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A Virginia man was arrested at a Washington checkpoint near the Capitol with an “unauthorized” inauguration pass, a gun and more than 500 rounds of ammunition, according to Capitol Police.

The suspect, identified as Wesley Allen Beeler, 31, was stopped at the checkpoint near Lower Senate Park about 6:30 p.m. Friday, an arrest report said. An unregistered gun and hundreds of rounds of ammunition were found inside the truck that was adorned with gun decals days ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, according to Capitol Police.

Beeler, of Fort Royal, Virginia, allegedly presented an “unauthorized Inauguration credential” to a Capitol Police officer. They did not describe what sort of document he showed that raised suspicion.

The arrest comes after the violent Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol where supporters of President Donald Trump and his unfounded claims of election fraud stormed the building in a violent siege that left five people dead and many more injured.

The suspect’s Ford F-150 pickup displayed weapons-related stickers, including one that read, “Assault Life,” and another that said, “If they come for your guns Give ‘Em your bullets first,” police said.

Beeler allegedly declared that he had a Glock handgun under an armrest, and a subsequent search found the nearly 550 rounds amount of ammunition and a loaded clip with 17 rounds, authorities said.

He was booked on suspicion of carrying a weapon without a license, according to court documents.

News of the arrest Saturday came as armed protesters were planning to descend on state capitals, including in St. Paul Minnesota and Austin, Texas.

In Sacramento, California the California Highway Patrol was on tactical alert, which allows for longer shifts, in preparation for inauguration-related protests.

No incidents or arrests have been reported.

President-elect Joe Biden is scheduled to be sworn in on Wednesday at the Capitol.

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