Police arrest armed man at Washington security checkpoint as US prepares for Trump mobs

Donald Trump says he won’t attend Joe Biden’s inauguration

Security in the area has been beefed up ahead of Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony, which is due to take place on Wednesday. There are concerns about further pro-Trump mobs after last week’s violence at Capitol Hill which left five people dead.

In some areas of Washington DC, vehicles now have to be approved before they can enter.

On Friday evening, a man from Virginia attempted to pass one such checkpoint with a fake credential, a court document reads.

A search of the vehicle uncovered a handgun and over 500 rounds of ammunition, AFP news agency reports.

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The man was subsequently arrested for possession of an unregistered firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition.

Police also noted the man had “several firearm-related decals” on the back of his vehicle.

Elsewhere, scattered protests across the US have begun this weekend as Joe Biden’s inauguration day approaches.

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Already, the US authorities have announced that the National Mall in Washington DC will be shut on the day itself amid security concerns.

The Mall is a long park with patches of grass that is typically filled with thousands of people on inauguration day.

At the same time, National Guard troops have begun filling into Washington DC.

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The FBI has warned there may be pro-Trump demonstrations in all 50 state capitols across the US in the coming days to contest Mr Biden’s presidency.

USA Today reports scattered protests in some capitols had taken place across the US on Saturday afternoon.

It said “about a dozen” Trump supporters had gathered outside the Texas Capitol gates in the afternoon. One was allegedly carrying a rifle while one is said to have had “a large knife”.

Other states including Nevada and Illinois also saw some small gatherings.

Illinois security personnel have taken the step of covering windows of the state capitol building in plywood.

While concerns about security mount, peaceful demonstrations are still going to be allowed in accordance with the US constitution.

Maj. Gen. Richard Neely, the adjutant general of the Illinois National Guard, said yesterday: “We’re all about First Amendment rights, but they need to be peaceful protests and demonstrations.”

In addition, the National Park Service has said a limited number of protests are being allowed in Washington DC, as long as they take place in designated areas. Attendants will have to be screened prior to entry.

The Secret Service said in a statement last week: “The inauguration of the President of the United States is a foundational element of our democracy. The safety and security of all those participating in the 59th Presidential Inauguration is of the utmost importance.

“For well over a year, the U.S. Secret Service, along with our NSSE partners, has been working tirelessly to anticipate and prepare for all possible contingencies at every level to ensure a safe and secure Inauguration Day.”

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