Florida authorities arrest man after Capitol bomb threat

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida authorities arrested a 61-year-old Tallahassee man in connection with a bomb threat overnight that prompted the closure of the state Capitol “out of an abundance of caution.”

Tallahassee police said they arrested Mark Wayne Clark, 61, for making a false bomb threat against state property. Authorities said he was taken into custody at a bar about 3 miles (5 kilometers) from the Capitol.

Capitol Police were notified of a bomb threat before 3 a.m. Thursday and swept through the Capitol grounds but nothing suspicious was discovered by patrols and bomb-sniffing dogs.

Law enforcement officials have been on high alert since state capitols were targeted with threats of violence following an insurrection at the U.S Capitol on Jan. 6. Florida’s Capitol had been on heightened security since Sunday, when the country braced for potential violence at state capitals in all 50 states. In Florida, no mobs materialized.

Officers were dispatched to the bar after receiving a call from an employee who told authorities that a man clad in camouflage had talked about planting a bomb at the Capitol, which was supposed to go off at 8 a.m.

Clark was taken into custody without incident, according to a police report.

The Tallahassee Police Department said the arrest was the result of collaborative investigation among Capitol Police, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Leon County Sheriff’s Office and the Joint Terrorism Task Force.

Florida state workers were allowed to return to work at the Capitol following a sweep of the premises.

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