Veteran arrested with loaded handgun outside Illinois VA hospital, jailed

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 | 1:30 p.m. CDT; updated 3:49 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, October 14, 2009

ST. LOUIS — Authorities say an Army veteran remains jailed after he was arrested with a loaded handgun outside an Illinois Veterans Affairs hospital where he warned a nurse he was armed and was "going to fill that place with lead."

Court documents show that 29-year-old Mark Harmon had told a nurse by telephone last Thursday that he was headed to the VA hospital in the southern Illinois town of Marion and threatened to go on a shooting rampage.

He was arrested within hours after he tried, using his pickup truck, to bypass police waiting at the VA. An affidavit says authorities found a loaded semiautomatic handgun in his truck.

Messages left Wednesday with his attorney and father weren't immediately returned.


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