Man arrested after boarding US train with assault rifle

A man who mentioned the White House and other landmarks before boarding a Washington-bound commuter train with an assault rifle was captured yesterday after breaking an ankle while running from two officers, police said.

Police said they arrested Asa Seeley, 25, before the commuter train left the West Baltimore station for the nation's capital, 35 miles to the southwest.

Seeley was taken into police custody for treatment at the University of Maryland Medical Center, Police Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld said.

An unlicensed taxi driver flagged down Officer Joshua Corcoran near the station about 7am local time yesterday after dropping off a passenger he had refused to drive to Washington, Police Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld said.

The driver said the man carried a towel or a blanket with a rifle butt protruding from it, Bealefeld said.

"There was some mention of landmarks in DC, the White House in DC," Bealefeld said. He did not identify the other landmarks, but said Seeley was apparently just trying to get to his home in Washington.

Bealefeld said Seeley boarded the train, then got off without the rifle as officers approached.

Police said Seeley ran and Corcoran tried to user a Taser on him before Seeley jumped from a 20-foot platform, breaking his ankle.

Authorities said they found a Chinese-made 7.62mm SKS assault rifle aboard the train. The weapon was unloaded, Bealefeld said, although Seeley had numerous rounds in a magazine and others loose.

Seeley has a record of arrests and some convictions, including drug offenses, Bealefeld said. The Secret Service and Washington police were notified. While Bealefeld said Seeley lived in Washington, a court record from an arrest last month in Baltimore shows him with a Baltimore address.

Bealefeld said police were investigating whether Seeley posed a serious threat. A hospital spokeswoman said he was in serious but stable condition in a shock trauma unit.