Kennedy was set to speak at a “Hispanic Heritage” event at the Wilshire Ebell Theater in Los Angeles when a man arrived at the venue and identified himself as a member of Kennedy security detail, Kennedy said. Police later arrived and arrested the man.
“The man, wearing two shoulder holsters with loaded pistols and spare ammunition magazines was carrying a U.S. Marshal badge on a lanyard and beltclip federal ID. He identified himself as a member of my security detail. Armed GDBA team members moved quickly to isolate and detain the man until LAPD arrived to make the arrest. I’m also grateful to LAPD for its rapid response,” Kennedy posted on X.
I’m very grateful that alert and fast-acting protectors from Gavin de Becker and Associates (GDBA) spotted and detained an armed man who attempted to approach me at my Hispanic Heritage speech at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles tonight. The man, wearing two shoulder… pic.twitter.com/vvJc0Gtk4o
— Robert F. Kennedy Jr (@RobertKennedyJr) September 16, 2023
The Los Angeles Police said the man will likely face a gun charge, but they don’t think that he was threatening anyone, CBS News reported.
Kennedy said that he hoped the incident would lead to him getting Secret Service protection. His father, Robert Kennedy, was shot and killed by a gunman on June 5, 1968, just miles away from where Kennedy Jr.’s campaign event took place.
“I’m still entertaining a hope that President Biden will allow me Secret Service protection. I am the first presidential candidate in history to whom the White House has denied a request for protection,” he said.
Kennedy previously called out Biden, suggesting that there was a political motivation behind the denial of the federal protection.
Kennedy, whose Democratic presidential primary polling average is nearly 12%, has focused his campaign on vaccine issues, foreign policy, and environmental issues. In a letter this week, he blasted the Democrat National Committee for going “off track” and reportedly not allowing a fair primary process.
“Unfortunately, in recent years our party leaders have succumbed to the siren of control,” Kennedy wrote in a letter to DNC Chairman Jamie Harrison. “They have compromised the defining democratic principle of one person, one vote through repeated interference in the primary elections. They have hijacked the party machinery and, in recent years, directed the power of censorship onto their political opponents, raising political victory onto the altar in place of honest democracy.”