Capitol Police flew to Deer Park, Ohio, a Cincinnati suburb represented by House Republican Brad Wenstrup, to investigate a possible threat against federally elected officials from a suspect whose work history could place him in proximity to his targets.
The case stems from an Oct. 29 incident in which local police responded to a psychiatric emergency, according to Deer Park Police Chief Michael F. Schlie. Officers uncovered a firearm and a possible threat against various national level politicians when responding to a minor incident on a residential block, according to the department.
Schlie told CQ Roll Call that Capitol Police were contacted within five to 10 minutes of the arrest, while the suspect was being transported to a local medical facility. Local authorities were concerned that the suspect’s “spotty work history placed him in proximity to the objects of his anger,” according to a statement by the Deer Park department.
Wenstrup’s office is aware of the incident, according to spokesperson Olivia Hnat. She referred further questions to the Capitol Police.
Capitol Police officers flew in from Washington, D.C., to interview the suspect and executed a search warrant on his home, uncovering documents and writings by the suspect.
Capitol Police spokesman Shennell Antrobus confirmed to CQ Roll Call that the department is working with local and federal law enforcement, but did not provide further information about the nature or subject of the threats because the investigation is ongoing.
Schlie explained he had to be “tight-lipped” on details because the threats are against a member of the government and subject to health privacy regulations. “We’re concerned because our involvement here was there was a medical emergency and certain parts of that are protected,” he said in a phone interview.
A lieutenant from the department told the Cincinnati Enquirer that he would characterize the documents as “manifestos,” and that the investigation found the suspect “may have been in close proximity to the politicians, but there is no evidence he ever made contact with them.”
The suspect is under emergency commitment for psychiatric evaluation, according to the Deer Park Police department.