A Virginia man who tried to get past a security checkpoint with fake inauguration credentials, a loaded pistol, and 500 rounds of ammunition has been arrested by the US Capitol Police.
Wesley Allen Beeler was taken into custody Friday night, according to CNN, after he pulled up to a checkpoint near the Washington DC Capitol complex.
Before he confessed to possessing a Glock semi-automatic weapon in his car, he reportedly gave officers an illegal inauguration credential.
Officers also learned that 17 rounds of ammunition and a round chamber ready to fire were loaded with the Glock. Beeler also had 509 rounds of ammunition and 21 12-gauge shotgun shells, according to a Metropolitan Police Department report.
The man was taken to the headquarters of the US Capitol Police and accused of carrying a concealed weapon, possessing an unregistered firearm, illegal possession of weapons, and possession of a large-capacity feeding device for ammunition.
In anticipation of Joe Biden's presidential inauguration, which will take place exactly two weeks after the deadly US Capitol protests, law enforcement has tightened its security measures.
FBI Director Christopher Wray said Thursday that during Biden's swearing-in ceremony, the agency is preparing for the possibility of further right-wing violence and armed demonstrations.
"We are seeing an extensive amount of concerning online chatter, I guess that's the best way I would describe it, about a number of events surrounding the inauguration," Wray said at a FEMA gathering. "And together with our partners, we evaluate those threats and what kind of resources to deploy against them. Right now, we are tracking calls for potential armed protest and activity leading up to the inauguration."