A DC intern’s gun arrest was merely due to a lack of judgement.
According to the Hill, Joshua Wheeler, 25, of Atchison, Kansas, reportedly brought an unloaded Smith & Wesson 9mm handgun into the House office building.
Wheeler, a DC intern working with Republican Rep. Lynn Jenkins, vice chairwoman of the House Republican Conference, reportedly forgot to leave his pistol at home. When he arrived at work on Monday at approximately 9 a.m., as he does every day, he was subject to a routine search and arrested when the gun was discovered.
Police arrested Joshua Wheeler on the charges of carrying the gun without a license and for possessing an unregistered firearm, Lieutenant Kimberly Schneider, the spokeswoman for the Capitol Police, told CNN in a statement, after he tried to enter the Longworth building at the New Jersey & C Street SE entrance. According to pretrial services, Wheeler will be arraigned Tuesday in D.C. Superior Court. While his employers believe the incident was truly an accident, he was also immediately placed on temporary leave.
“Mr. Wheeler used poor judgment and was immediately placed on temporary leave,” Tom Brandt, a Jenkins spokesman, said in a statement, adding that he had been working with Rep. Jenkins since May 18.
“It’s our understanding that this was an accident and we are in full cooperation with Capitol Police,” he added.
Capitol Police Chief Kim C. Dine praised the officers for catching the weapon in a statement to Roll Call.
“These events today serve as a reminder to maintain our focus while we continue to perform our law enforcement and security mission at the highest levels on a daily basis,” Dine said in the statement. “I want to commend the two House Division officers for their diligence in conducting security screening — this type of diligence is critical and essential. Both House Division officers maintained their posted assignments as they continued to engage in a multitude of police duties as part of their routine responsibilities.”
[Photo by Manny Ceneta/Getty Images]