U.S. Capitol Police said they discovered an assault rifle with an extended magazine in a delivery vehicle headed to the Capitol Hill early Friday morning.
The weapon was discovered by a screening team at an off-site delivery facility where police inspect delivery vehicles before they get to the Capitol, according to a Capitol Police news release.
The gun, which was partially wrapped in a blanket in the backseat of a large Ford pick-up truck, was confiscated by officers at the off-site facility.
The driver, Michael J. Donohue, 57, of Maryland, is facing charges of possession of an unregistered firearm and possession of unregistered ammunition and other charges, police said.
They added that there is no evidence to suggest he was targeting Congress or the Capitol.
“Still, this serves as yet another reminder that all weapons are prohibited from Capitol Grounds,” said U.S. Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger in a statement. “I thank our entire team at the off-site screening facility from stopping this gun before it came anywhere near the U.S. Capitol Complex.”
Capitol Police said last year officers confiscated about 40 guns on or near the Capitol grounds, most of them from people driving through the area.
Even if a gun is legally registered in another state, it is still illegal to bring it onto Capitol grounds, police said.
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