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A Salisbury man walked into a popular Washington, D.C. pizzeria, pointed an assault rifle at an employee and claimed that he was investigating “pizza gate,” a conspiracy theory related to former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, the Washington Post reported.


The incident at the Comet Ping Pong pizza restaurant sent employees and patrons fleeing to nearby businesses. Edgar Maddison Welch, 28, of Salisbury, has been charged with assault with a deadly weapon.

The restaurant in the Chevy Chase neighborhood, was dragged into fake news and conspiracy theories during the presidential campaign. The restaurant, its owner, staff and nearby businesses have been attacked on social media and received death threats, the Washington Post reported.