Mathew P. Wright, 30, of Henderson, faces multiple charges including obstruction of a highway, endangerment, unlawful flight from law enforcement, misconduct involving a weapon and terrorist acts. Wright was booked into the Mohave County Jail, according to a release from the Arizona Department of Public Safety.
Nevada Highway Patrol responded to reports of the barricade on the Pat Tillman memorial bridge around 12 p.m. Trooper Jason Buratczuk said the man was possibly armed with a rifle and was blocking all southbound traffic lanes. Arizona Highway Patrol, Boulder City police and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police and National Park Service Law Enforcement were also responding to the incident.
“We’re in a tourist location and you hear someone possibly with a long rifle, I mean the scars are still, you know, pretty fresh from 1 October.”
According to Buratczuk, the man was seen waving handmade sign reading, “release the OIG report.”
The man attempted to drive down the U.S. 93 in the “homemade armored vehicle,” when he ran over spike strips causing three of the vehicle’s tires to deflate.
Wright was blocked by a semi-truck then turned around and drove into a wash trail where he was taken into custody by Arizona authorities without incident.
Authorities found a rifle and handgun inside the truck, the release said.
“We are pleased that the partnership and cooperation between all agencies involved resulted in the successful and safe conclusion to this incident,” AZDPS Captain Brian Swanty said.
NHP said authorities evacuated all pedestrians and vehicles off the bridge and shutdown the road to traffic while containing the scene.
Chris Vasquez was on vacation with his family. He noticed the traffic and barricades on the bridge.
“The first thing that comes to mind is what happened in the shooting out here in Vegas. That’s the first thing. We come out here just to vacation, you know, and that’s kind of like ‘wow,’” Vasquez said.
Traffic on the U.S. 93 reopened at around 1:34 p.m.
Jenn Deak was in the visitor center of Hoover Dam about to watch a video on the structure before taking the tour when she heard a security officer yell, “Halt.” It is unclear who the officer was addressing. Shortly after she heard security yell, Deak and what she said were another 50-100 people on the tour were evacuated from the dam. Tours were suspended until further notice, according to a Bureau of Reclamation tweet.
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