News24

Fears of copycat 'Batman' attack - man held

2012-07-28 07:26

Washington - US police arrested a man and seized an arsenal of weapons after he threatened his employer and raised fears he was inspired by the recent mass shooting in Colorado, officials said on Friday.

Police in Prince George's county Maryland, near Washington, told a news conference that the man, who was facing the sack, told his employer on several occasions: "I am The Joker, I'm gonna load my guns and blow everybody up."

The threat was a chilling reminder of last week's rampage at a midnight screening of the latest Batman movie in Aurora, Colorado, which left 12 people dead and injured 58 others.

The suspect in that case, James Holmes, was wearing full body armour and had dyed his hair orange. After his arrest he had reportedly referred to himself as "The Joker" a villainous character from the Batman films and comics.

Alerted to the latest threat on Thursday, police searched a man's home where they found approximately 25 firearms, including semi-automatic rifles and pistols, and several thousand rounds of ammunition, a federal agent said.

The suspect, who was wearing a T-shirt that read "Guns don't kill people, I do," was arrested without incident and was taken in for medical treatment, a police official said.

The suspect has not yet been charged as the investigation continues.