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Saturday, July 20, 2024

‘Captain America’ arrested at US military base

The armed suspect claimed he had “top secret” information for a general at the Air Force facility

A Florida man has been arrested for trying to enter a military base while armed and identifying himself as “Captain America,” according to a criminal complaint published this week. The man, who claimed he had “top secret information,” was in an “extreme state of paranoia and psychosis,” the complaint alleged.

Baruch Roche II drove to the front gate of MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida, in early November, telling security personnel there that he was “Captain America” and that he was an active member of the United States Southern Command (SOCOM), according to the complaint.

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Roche insisted that he had a meeting with a “SOCOM general” to provide “top secret information,” the file continued.

Denied access to the facility, Roche “became argumentative” and “threatened to come back every day and look for the officers denying him entry,” the document stated. Air Force personnel placed Roche in handcuffs and discovered an AR-15-style rifle and approximately 125 rounds of ammunition in the trunk of his car, as well as a military identification card naming him as a retired Air Force veteran.

Due to his extreme state of paranoia and psychosis,” Roche was involuntarily hospitalized, the complaint stated.

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Roche is charged with one count of attempting to bring a firearm onto a federal facility and faces up to a year in prison if convicted. The state also seized his weapon and ammunition.

Roche’s encounter at MacDill Air Force Base took place less than two weeks after Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey was placed on lockdown amid reports of an active shooter.

Several US military bases have been targeted by mass shooters in recent years, with a Saudi aviation student killing three people and injuring eight others at a Florida naval facility in 2019 and a military veteran threatening to “shoot up” a base before he killed 18 people at a bar and bowling alley in Maine in October.