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Capitol Police arrest man in suspicious vehicle outside Supreme Court

Incident comes on court's second day of new term, with Senate in session

Capitol Police investigate a suspicious vehicle outside the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
Capitol Police investigate a suspicious vehicle outside the Supreme Court on Tuesday. (Bryan Olin Dozier/NurPhoto via AP)

The Capitol Police removed a man from a suspicious vehicle parked in front of the Supreme Court and took him into custody Tuesday morning, the second day of the high court’s term.

After a loud bang and smoke, officers removed the man from the SUV. The intersection of First Street Northeast and Constitution Avenue Northeast was blocked off by a string of police cruisers.

“One of our teams just moved in and extracted the man from the SUV. The man is in custody. Everyone is safe,” the Capitol Police said in a statement.

Capitol Police Deputy Chief Jason Bell briefs the media on Tuesday on the suspicious vehicle at the Supreme Court and arrest of the driver. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Shortly before officers arrested the man, the department sought to prepare people in the area and indicated that no one was in imminent danger.

“The USCP is preparing to disrupt a Suspicious Vehicle in front of the U.S. Supreme Court Building. A loud bang may be heard in the area. There is no cause for alarm, and no action needs to be taken by Congressional Staff,” the police said.

Capitol Police said the suspect is Dale Paul Melvin of Kimball, Mich.

Around 9:30 a.m., Melvin illegally parked his Chevrolet Tahoe SUV in front of the Supreme Court, Deputy Chief Jason Bell told reporters at a news conference after the incident. “The man refused to talk, made a statement to the effect of ‘the time for talking is done,’” Bell said.

The department’s crisis negotiators then tried to speak with Melvin, and at around 11 a.m., Capitol Police officers removed him from the car.

One of the car windows was broken, and Melvin was arrested. No weapons were found, Bell said.

The department’s K-9 unit and Containment Emergency Response Team (SWAT), was on the scene. Supreme Court Police officers were also on hand.

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