What to Know
- A man called police after driving a pickup truck onto the National Mall when he said he came in contact with anthrax, police said.
- He stood on the grass next to his truck and appeared to be talking on a phone for several minutes.
- Officers approached the man on foot and detained him for his own safety, they said.
A man drove a pickup truck onto the National Mall Tuesday afternoon because he believed he had been exposed to anthrax and wanted to warn people, according to the U.S. Park Police Department.
Sgt. Anna Rose, with the park police, said the man told authorities he saw a farmer in rural Virginia spreading a substance on a field. He brought some of the substance with him onto the National Mall near 3rd Street, Northwest, between Madison and Jefferson streets around 3 p.m.
Once on the grounds, the man called U.S. Capitol police, Rose said. He was detained by officers shortly after the phone calls, but his white pickup truck remained on the Mall four hours later. It was finally removed at 7:30 p.m.
On Wednesday, police identified the man as Kevin Osborn of Spotsylvania County, Virginia.
Osborn was tested for anthrax exposure, and a robot was deployed to inspect the truck. Those tests came back negative.
Rose said the area around 3rd Street was blocked to vehicles and pedestrians.
Authorities closed several streets in the area, and emergency responders were told to suit up, but firefighters quickly determined there was no hazardous material, fire department spokesman Doug Buchanan said.
Osborn never threatened anyone and was compliant throughout the incident, Rose said.
Park police said Osborn was cited for driving a vehicle onto public land without permission and has been fined $250.
He was released from the hospital Wednesday morning, park police said.