New Jersey man charged after crashing SUV into Washington Monument barrier

A New Jersey man faces assault charges after a scary scene Saturday night on the National Mall.

U.S. Park Police say Jack Joseph Dessin, 38, crashed his SUV into a barrier around 7:40 p.m. outside the Washington Monument.

Witnesses say it wasn’t just a straight-on crash. The suspect was driving around the grass and walkway – and nearly hitting visitors. 

Nobody was hurt. It appears couple of those witnesses stepped in to help stop this driver.  

One witness, Nicholas Kline, also shared some of his experience online.

A man is in custody after crashing his SUV on Saturday into a barrier outside the Washington Monument. (Photo courtesy: Nicholas Kline)

Kline says he and his son were walking around the Washington Monument when they spotted a car driving in the grass and on the walkway.  

Within minutes, Kline said crowds were running for safety and that there was chaos.

Some people were yelling the driver may have a gun and to take cover. 

Then, Kline said the vehicle ran into a wall by the Washington Monument, and "barely missing a woman pulled to safety by others." 

Kline said he saw a man running toward that driver so he ran as well – and they were able to get that driver out of his vehicle and take the keys. 

Kline said the driver went back to his SUV and pulled out a wallet and laptop, but no gun. There were some odd messages displayed on the driver's SUV.

Dessin now faces a charge of attempted assault with a dangerous weapon (automobile). His first court is expected Monday.

This is a developing story. Check back later for updates.