Arrest at Wisconsin Capitol building the latest threat targeting elected officials

The United States Capitol Police report a "historically high" number of threat investigations against members of Congress.
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Posted at 9:37 AM, Oct 06, 2023
and last updated 2023-10-06 10:37:54-04

MADISON, Wis. — Governor Tony Evers responded to questions after Wisconsin State Capitol Police arrested a man who showed up to the governor's security desk with a gun twice and demanded to see the governor.

"Yeah, I'm okay. To their credit, the Capitol Police took control of the situation and it’s over," Governor Evers said.

The incident is the latest in a string of threats and violence targeting elected leaders.
In 2022, a gunman fatally shot retired Juneau County Judge John Roemer. The suspected shooter had a list with other high-profile names including Evers and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

In another case, Brian Higgins from Wisconsin pleaded guilty to his involvement in plotting to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan.

The United States Capitol Police report a "historically high" number of threat investigations against members of Congress.

In 2022, their Threat Assessment Section investigated 7,501 cases, a drop from 9,625 in 2021 then 8,613 in 2020.

U.S. Capitol Police leaders are considering opening regional offices in cities including Milwaukee to protect members and those around them.

"They need to take every threat as something that that's going to happen," Bruce Gregory, manager of Great Lakes Security Services said.

The private security company staffs everything from events to high-profile figures in corporations. They are preparing to work with the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee.

Gregory explained that the overall demand for security across the board is extremely high.

"We are not able to handle all the jobs that come in on the phone on a daily basis. There's just so much work out there," Gregory said.

In an email, the Wisconsin State Patrol said:

"The Wisconsin State Patrol’s Dignitary Protection Unit is constantly vigilant striving to prevent acts of violence toward the elected officials we protect. The DPU trains extensively to prevent any unsafe or criminal acts in the vicinity of our protectees. Any threat towards an elected official is handled with the highest priority. Law enforcement officers investigate the threats to determine any credibility that may exist. Enforcement action is taken when it’s appropriate."

We also reached out to State Capitol Police but has not received a response yet.