TOWN OF ROCK
Traffic backed up in both directions on Highway 51 between Janesville and Beloit on Thursday afternoon as officers arrested an armed man who had made threatening statements to neighbors earlier Thursday.
WCLO radio reporter Lorin Cox, who was in the line of cars, said the white van, apparently headed north, was followed by squad cars from the town of Beloit, Rock County Sheriff’s Office and State Patrol.
The van stopped on the northbound side of the highway near the southern end of the Southern Wisconsin Regional Airport, Cox said.
A man in his 30s to 40s got out of the van with hands on his head and walked backward toward officers, apparently as the officers commanded him, Cox said.
Officers with rifles then approached the van and searched it. A police dog also was seen.
The man had reportedly made statements to neighbors about harming others earlier Thursday, authorities said.
Neighbors called police at about 3:30 p.m. Thursday and said the man had left and described the vehicle.
Town of Beloit Police Department Sgt. Gregg Cisneros would not release the name of the man Thursday night.
He said the Rock County Sheriff’s office located the vehicle and that authorities executed a high-risk traffic stop because the man was armed and making threatening statements.
The man was arrested on a charge of disorderly conduct while armed, possession of a dangerous weapon, open intoxicants, harassment by electronic communication, operating without a license and no proof of insurance.
This story was updated at 10 p.m. Thursday.