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Press Release

Philadelphia Man Arrested and Charged with Assaulting Federal Protective Service Security Officers

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Pennsylvania

PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney William M. McSwain announced that William K. Washington, 65, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was arrested and charged by Criminal Complaint with assaulting and resisting two federal officers, a Class D felony. The Complaint alleges that Washington assaulted two Department of Homeland Security, Federal Protective Service (FPS) security officers at a Social Security Administration (SSA) office in Philadelphia on May 8, 2020. The defendant appeared today via video teleconference before United States Magistrate Judge Linda K. Caracappa for his initial appearance and arraignment.

The Complaint alleges that Washington forced his way inside the SSA office at 701 East Chelten Avenue, after he was told by a FPS security officer that the office was closed to the public because of the coronavirus pandemic. Washington refused to leave even after he was ordered to do so; he then resisted as the officers physically removed him from the premises. The Complaint further alleges that Washington punched one of the officers multiple times and injured both officers during the encounter.

“The defendant allegedly barged into a closed federal office, refused to listen to repeated instructions to leave, and then escalated the encounter to the point that he injured two federal security officers who were simply doing their job,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain. “Such behavior is intolerable and my Office will always take swift action to hold accountable anybody who assaults officers who protect and serve the public on federal property.”

If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of eight years in prison.

The case was investigated by the Federal Protective Service and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Albert S. Glenn.

An indictment, information, or criminal complaint is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Updated May 13, 2020