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Authorities Detonate Suspicious Device Near US Capitol

Authorities Detonate Suspicious Device Near US Capitol
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Authorities Detonate Suspicious Device Near US Capitol

A bomb squad in Washington, D.C. safely destroyed a pressure cooker found Sunday in a suspicious, unoccupied vehicle near the U.S. Capitol building.

U.S. Capitol Police say officers on routine patrol spotted the vehicle and detected an odor of gasoline. Authorities say the bomb squad subsequently destroyed items of concern inside the vehicle, including the pressure cooker.

A statement said a follow-up search of the vehicle detected "nothing hazardous."

The vehicle was parked in an area near the site of a Memorial Day concert.

The owner was arrested on unrelated charges of driving on a suspended license.

Pressure cooker bombs were used to kill three people and injured more than 250 others at the Boston Marathon in April 2013.

U.S. Capitol Police officers on routine patrol found the suspicious vehicle on 3rd Street across from the Capitol's west lawn, spokeswoman Lt. Kimberly Schneider said. They found the pressure cooker and also detected the odor of gasoline.

The Capitol Police's Hazardous Devices Section closed off nearby streets and "disrupted the items of concern in the vehicle," including the pressure cooker, Schneider added.

A subsequent investigation found nothing hazardous, but the vehicle's owner, a Virginia man, was arrested and charged with operating a vehicle after his license had been revoked.

The U.S. Secret Service, FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, police and other federal agencies assisted during the incident and aftermath.

Some Reuters information contributed to this report.