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Police: Man 'Openly' Carrying Guns Near Wis. School Arrested

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Police say they arrested a 23-year-old Somerset man after he was spotted openly carrying two firearms within 1,000 feet of Somerset Middle School.

According to Somerset Police, at 12:11 p.m. Tuesday, they were notified of a man walking and carrying a gun in the vicinity of the Somerset Middle School.

Police located the man on the intersection of Oak Street and Sunrise Drive. He was carrying a semi-automatic AR-15-style rifle on a sling across his back and a Glock, semi-automatic .45 caliber pistol in a holster on his hip – both weapons in plain sight.

When police questioned the man about his intentions, the man refused to give them any information, insisted that he was within his rights and refused to identify himself, police said.

The original location reported was within 1,000 feet of the school where weapons are not permitted unless the person carrying the weapon falls under an exception made in the statute, but the man made it impossible to determine if he fell under an exception, according to police.

The man, later identified as Mark J. Hoffman, was then arrested for obstructing an officer and disorderly conduct, police said. Both of Hoffman's weapons were found to have high capacity magazines and were loaded.

Hoffman was booked and released at the St. Croix County Jail and the case will be referred to the St. Croix District Attorney.

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