Man Arrested After Rushing Queen Elizabeth's Coffin at Westminster Hall

A man who appeared to rush Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin in Westminster Hall is now in custody.

via People:

Security guards swarmed the suspect as he allegedly ran toward Her Majesty, who is lying-in-state in the London building until her funeral proceedings begin early Monday, per ITV and The Guardian.

Metropolitan Police released a statement on the incident shortly after, stating: “Around 22:00hrs on Friday 16 September officers from the Met’s Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command detained a man in Westminster Hall following a disturbance,” the outlets reported.

Met Police added, “He was arrested for an offence under the Public Order Act and is currently in custody.” They did not release his identity.

Met Police did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

A source told the Guardian the man ran out of line and climbed the steps to touch the coffin before being detained; the account was not denied by the Met nor the House of Commons.

The live stream from the venue abruptly stopped for roughly 15 minutes after the incident, according to The Sun.

Bystanders told The Sun they were shocked about what happened.

One alleged the suspect tried to pull the flag from the Queen’s coffin, calling the event “extremely upsetting.”

“We thought someone had fainted and then we heard someone shriek,” they said. “Someone got up to the coffin, grabbed the flag and pulled it upwards. They picked up the bottom and wafted it, almost to see what was underneath. It happened so fast.”

Another witness told The Wall Street Journal, “People near to it screamed.”

Aside from the disruption, the Queen’s four children had a historical moment while honoring the late monarch.

On Friday evening, King Charles III, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward came together at their mother’s coffin for an emotional Vigil of the Princes.

Just after 7:30 p.m. local time, the siblings joined the King’s Body Guards to ceremoniously protect the Queen’s coffin as it laid in state, draped in the Royal Standard and topped with the Imperial Crown.

After taking their positions — King Charles at one end, Prince Andrew on the other with Princess Anne and Prince Edward on either side — they bowed their heads.

Mourners who stood in line for hours to see the Queen’s coffin continued to file past during the vigil.

After about 15 minutes, the siblings somberly stepped away.

British government officials had temporarily closed the back of the line for those waiting to see the Queen on Friday morning, preventing new people wishing to pay their respects from joining the ongoing queue.

Wait times for visitors had reportedly stretched to 14 hours, NBC News reported, with the line measuring at nearly 5 miles.

The Queen’s coffin will continue to lie in state at Westminster Hall through the weekend; thousands have visited to pay their respects.

On Monday morning, the coffin will be moved to nearby Westminster Abbey, where the state funeral will begin.

They need to go ahead and put the Queen in the ground. It’s been a week — we know she’s tired of being carried around.

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