Michigan man arrested outside US Capitol with body armor, ammunition, false ID

In an incident that, upon first glance, could easily have been mistaken for an attempted attack on the U.S. Capitol, a man from Michigan was stopped outside the complex on Friday sporting body armor, toting ammunition and a BB gun, and carrying fake law enforcement identification, as NBC News reports.

The man, since identified as 53-year-old Jerome Felipe of Flint, Michigan, is reportedly a retired New York City cop who left service back in 2018 and has resided in the Midwest since 2019.

Those limited details about Felipe’s prior background in law enforcement were confirmed to the New York Post by an NYPD spokesperson who added, “We are fully cooperating with the U.S. Capitol Police investigation.”

A press release issued by the U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) explained that Felipe had parked his 2017 Dodge Challenger on the west side of the Capitol building, at just prior to 5:00 a.m., a USCP officer engaged him in conversation.

It was then that Felipe displayed a fake badge bearing the words “Department of the INTERPOL” and claimed he was working as a criminal investigator within that agency.

At that point, Felipe agreed to allow officers to search his vehicle, and that is when they found the BB gun, a pair of ballistic vests, multiple high capacity ammunition magazines, and other items. There were, however, no real weapons inside the car.

According to the USCP, it remains unclear why Felipe had parked his vehicle near the Capitol, and an investigation in the matter is ongoing.

As a result of his arrest, Felipe now faces charges of unlawful possession of high capacity magazines as well as possession of unregistered ammunition.

Though the circumstances leading to Felipe’s arrest are indeed bizarre and somewhat disturbing, it remains to be seen whether he ever posed a credible threat to the Capitol or anyone in the immediate area.