(BALTIMORE) — A man who was shot by police after reportedly making a bomb threat at a Baltimore TV news station now faces felony charges as he remains hospitalized for non-life-threatening injuries.
Alex Michael Brizzi, 25, is facing charges of second-degree arson and first-degree malicious burning — both felonies — as well as threat of arson, reckless endangerment and possessing a phony destructive device, Baltimore police said Friday.
Police said the incident was not connected to organized terrorism.
Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said Friday that Brizzi, of Howard County, Maryland, had challenges with mental illness and that his father has been cooperative with authorities. Police said Brizzi will undergo a psychiatric evaluation when he’s well enough.
Brizzi was wearing a hedgehog “onesie” and a surgical mask, as well as what appeared to be an explosive vest, when he entered the Fox-affiliated news station WBFF Thursday, holding a flash drive with something he apparently wanted the station to run on the news.
Police said the USB flash drive contained video rants of Brizzi talking about the end of the world.
When Brizzi walked out of the station and didn’t take orders to remove his hands out of his pockets, he was shot at least three times by an officer, police said. A robot was later deployed to disarm him.
Following the stand-off with police, investigators found that what originally appeared to be an explosive device on Brizzi was actually a vest stuffed with chocolate candy bars wrapped in aluminum foil, and nothing was wired that could possibly blow up. There was also a small motherboard contraption that was attached to him and a wire running down the sleeve of his jacket that emulated a detonation device, police said.
A car was also set on fire in front of the news station at the time Brizzi entered the station. Police said the fire was associated with Brizzi.
Police said Friday a search of the TV station and Brizzi’s home and car didn’t turn up any other real or fake explosives.
Police said Friday they are still examining the contents of the flash drive.
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