U.S. Capitol Police arrested a Virginia man at a security checkpoint Friday night with an unregistered Glock handgun and more than 500 rounds of ammunition.
Wesley Allen Beeler, 31, was arrested around 6:30 p.m. at the intersection of E Street NE and 12th Street NE, which is about a mile from the U.S. Capitol.
He had an unregistered Glock 17 handgun, 509 rounds of 9MM ammunition, a 17-round Glock magazine, and 21 shotgun shells, according to a D.C. Metropolitan Police report.
Beeler also presented a “non-government issued credential” to the officers at the checkpoint, according to a USCP spokesperson.
He was charged with possession of an unregistered firearm, possession of unregistered ammunition, and possession of a large-capacity magazine.
Beeler told The Washington Post that he was running late to his job as a security guard in Washington, D.C., and forgot that his firearm was in his truck. The Post report said he denied that he had 500 rounds of ammunition.
“It was an honest mistake,” Beeler told The Post. “I pulled up to a checkpoint after getting lost in D.C. because I’m a country boy. … I showed them the inauguration badge that was given to me.”
Capitol Police are on high alert following the U.S. Capitol riot last week that left five people dead.
Up to 25,000 National Guard troops will be deployed in Washington, to provide enhanced security for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration Wednesday.
FBI Director Christopher Wray warned of “potential armed protests” in Washington, and at state capitals around the country, telling Vice President Mike Pence in a briefing that the FBI is “seeing an extensive amount of concerning online chatter” ahead of Biden’s swearing-in.
“We’re monitoring all incoming leads, whether they’re calls for armed protest, potential threats that grow out of the January 6 breach of the Capitol, or other kinds of potential threats leading up to inaugural events and in various other targets,” Wray said during Thursday’s briefing. “Anybody who plots or attempts violence in the coming weeks should count on a visit.”