GPO Employee Suspended After Bringing a Gun to Work

Posted April 7, 2010 at 4:47pm

A Government Printing Office employee who brought a handgun to work on March 22 has been suspended pending criminal proceedings.

Donald Balsbaugh was caught when a GPO officer at the main entrance at 732 N. Capitol St. NW discovered the gun in his blue bag as it went through an X-ray machine around 7:15 a.m. It turned out to be a Ruger 9-millimeter semiautomatic handgun loaded with 15 rounds of ammunition. Balsbaugh was arrested, and the gun was turned over to Capitol Police.

“The security procedures worked,” GPO spokesman Gary Somerset explained in an e-mail. “GPO’s police officers have been commended for handling this incident with precision and professionalism.”

As Balsbaugh was not licensed to carry a handgun in the District, he was indicted on Wednesday. GPO police said this is the first incident of an employee bringing a gun to the GPO building.