A man armed with an assault rifle was arrested after opening fire outside the Cuban Embassy in Washington, DC, early Thursday, his bullets tearing holes into the walls and pillars near the front entrance in what authorities suspect was a hate crime. The gunfire broke out around 2am. outside the embassy in northwest Washington. Metropolitan Police Department officers were called to the scene after neighbors reported hearing gunshots, authorities said. No injuries were reported. Officers found the man, Alexander Alazo, 42, of Aubrey, Texas, armed with an assault rifle, and they took him into custody without incident, police said.
A police report obtained by the AP describes the shooting as a "suspected hate crime” and says Alazo "knowingly discharged multiple rounds from an AK-47 rifle into the Cuban Embassy." But the report also says Alazo’s motivation is unknown. Officers recovered the rifle, ammunition, and a white powdery substance that was found in a small baggie after Alazo's arrest, according to the report. Alazo was arrested on charges of possessing an unregistered firearm and ammunition, assault with intent to kill, and possessing a high-capacity magazine, a Secret Service spokeswoman said. Cuba’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that embassy staff members were "safe and protected” but that the shooting caused "material damage" to the building.
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