A 19-year-old man tried to steal a police officer’s gun during a Donald Trump rally on Saturday night at a Las Vegas theater.
CNN reports that Michael Sandford started talking to a Las Vegas Metropolitan Police officer pretending that he was trying to get an autograph. While the two were talking, Sandford tried to grab the police officer’s gun out of his holster during the Donald Trump rally. Other security officers were able to quickly get the situation under control and take Sandford into custody.
“While inside the theater, a subject, later identified as 19-year-old Michael Sandford, approached a uniformed LVMPD officer who was assigned to the event,” police said in a statement. “Sandford began a conversation with the officer under the pretense that he was seeking an autograph. During the conversation, Sanford attempted to disarm the officer.”
It is not clear whether Sandford was trying to harm Donald Trump, but the U.S. Secret Service is not taking the incident lightly. Although Donald Trump is under U.S. Secret Service protection while he is the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, other security officers are sometimes hired for extra protection, as was the case at the Las Vegas rally.
The U.S. Secret Service has charged the man who tried to grab the officer’s gun with violating two federal laws, including assault. Sandford could serve up to a decade in prison if he is convicted of the crimes.
The man went for the gun inside the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino’s Mystere Theater where Donald Trump supporters were located, but it is not known what time the incident occurred, according to the Daily News.
A young man wearing a Donald Trump sticker was escorted out of the rally, but he was not identified, and it was not clear why he was being escorted out of the building by Las Vegas police.
Famous Las Vegas singer Wayne Newton was in the front row to see Donald Trump speak at the rally.
Trump spoke for over an hour about “crooked Hillary,” the current president, Barack Obama, who Trump believes is “weak,” and he even struck back at his own Republican party.
The Donald also tackled immigration and how he still plans on building a wall between Mexico and the U.S., and that the U.S. military will “knock the hell out of ISIS.”
Trump left the packed rally while “Viva Las Vegas” played in the background and his die-hard supporters cheered wildly.
Outside the Donald Trump rally, some protesters chanted, “Dump the Trump!” and tried to get the attention of passing cars with signs.
A heated debate between two strangers over whether Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump was a better presidential candidate began, and the police cleared the sidewalk for people passing through.
Otherwise, the Las Vegas Donald Trump rally was a rather peaceful one. Knowing that the rally had the potential to turn very violent if the 19-year-old had been able to take the gun from the police officer, it is likely that the U.S. Secret Service will certainly keep an eye out for more potential violence in rallies to come.
[Photo by AP Photo/John Locher]