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Authorities arrest man reportedly attempting to blow up a vehicle at the Pentagon


Allegedly wanted to blow himself up, too

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Authorities arrested a 19-year-old Arkansas man for reportedly attempting to blow up a vehicle in a parking lot at the Pentagon.

What are the details?

The Justice Department announced that authorities arrested Matthew Dmitri Richardson of Fayetteville, Arkansas, after a Pentagon officer reportedly witnessed Richardson ignite a swatch of fabric and attempt to stick it inside the gas tank of a 2016 Land Rover.

According to the Justice Department, the owner of the vehicle was identified as an active duty service member with no relationship to Richardson.

Richardson reportedly told the officer that he intended to "blow this vehicle up" as well as himself. The unnamed officer was able to detain Richardson, but the suspect ended up breaking free and fleeing on foot into the Arlington National Cemetery. The Pentagon Force Protection Agency Police Emergency Response Team later apprehended him in the area of the Arlington House and took him into custody.

Richardson is being charged with maliciously attempting to damage and destroy by means of fire a vehicle, used in and affecting interstate and foreign commerce. If convicted, Richardson could face a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and could serve a maximum penalty of 20 years.

What else?

Richardson appeared in court on Tuesday, where he reportedly called the charges a "lie."

Just two days before this incident, authorities arrested the 19-year-old for felony assault on a law enforcement officer in Arlington County.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Woodrow G. Kusse, chief of Pentagon Police, made the announcement, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Virginia.

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