Law enforcement arrested a man who they say was minutes away from carrying out a mass shooting at a church in Northern Virginia on Sunday morning.
Rui Jiang, 35, was taken into custody with a loaded gun and extra ammo at Park Valley Church in Haymarket. Authorities said he was on a mission to kill, NBC Washington reports.
“This was a thwarted diabolical plot to kill churchgoers in Haymarket, Virginia … and local law enforcement stopped it,” Chief Kevin Davis of the Fairfax County Police Department said.
“Minutes. Minutes. The congregation was making their way into the church. He was in the vestibule of the church about to enter,” Davis said. “So, minutes or seconds away.”
Investigators said they were able to stop the potential massacre thanks to someone who saw troubling posts on Instagram and called police. Several posts showed Jiang pointing a firearm at pictures of churches, authorities said.