Home / National News / Virginia police arrest sword-wielding man dressed as the Joker

 

(WINCHESTER, Va.) — A 31-year-old man in Virginia was arrested and charged with wearing a mask in public Friday after he was spotted walking around dressed as the iconic comic book supervillain the Joker, police said.

Police in Winchester — located about 75 miles northwest of Washington, D.C. — said the Winchester Emergency Communications Center received “several calls” around 2 p.m. on Friday of a suspicious male wearing a black cape and carrying a sword walking around the city.

Jeremy Putman was charged with wearing a mask in public, a felony that could land him in jail for up to five years, the Winchester Police Department said in a statement.

Police said they had received several similar reports over the last week, but they do not believe there are additional suspects.

Although it may seem surprising that wearing a mask in public is a felony, police said it wants “to remind the community of the seriousness of the crime.”

According to Virginia Code 18.2-422, “It shall be unlawful for any person over 16 years of age, with the intent to conceal his identity, wear any mask, hood, or other device, whereby a substantial portion of the face is hidden or covered, so as to conceal the identity of the wearer, to be or appear in any public place, or upon any private property in this Commonwealth, without first having obtained from the owner or tenant thereof consent to do so in writing.”

Putnam is being held at the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center on a $2,000 secured bond.

It is unclear if he has an attorney.

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