Man smashes windows with 2×4 on Statehouse grounds

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSPA) – A man was arrested on the Statehouse grounds early Sunday morning when he was found damaging property.

According to the SC Department of Public Safety, Ernest Rodney Thompson, 46, was taken into custody around 4 a.m. after two Bureau of Public Safety officers discovered the suspect had broken some windows of vehicles on Main St., as well as windows to the Eastside of the Statehouse at the entrance to the Lt. Governor’s office.

The officers reportedly saw the man walking down the steps at the Southside of the Statehouse with a 2×4 piece of wood in his hands. According to the report, Thompson was speaking loudly towards them, approached the officers with the piece of lumber.

The officers then state that they presented a TASER after telling Thompson to stop but did not use it on him. The suspect became compliant and was taken into custody. He admitted to the officers at the scene about breaking the windows.

Thompson has been charged with Damage to State Property, Public Disorderly Conduct, and Damaging/Tampering with a Vehicle. He is currently being held at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center in Columbia.

The Eastside steps will be sealed off from the public and closed to visitors throughout the day Sunday.

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