One Capitol Police Officer is dead and another injured after suspect rams car through barricade outside building
The U.S. Capitol is on lockdown after a vehicle attempted to ram into a barrier striking two Capitol Police officers. One officer has died from injuries sustained. Two law enforcement officials told NBC News that the driver jumped out of the car with a knife and was shot by Capitol police. He has since been confirmed dead.
“(US Capitol Police) is responding to the North Barricade vehicle access point along (Constitution) Avenue for reports someone rammed a vehicle into two USCP officers. A suspect is in custody. Both officers are injured. All three have been transported to the hospital,” USCP said in a tweet Friday.
The deceased officer has not been named.
A message was also sent to congressional offices that said, “Due to an external security threat,” there was ” no entry or exit is permitted at this time. You may move throughout the building(s) but stay away from exterior windows and doors. If you are outside, seek cover.” Congress is in spring recess for the week, so lawmakers were not working in the building when the incident occurred, though both buildings have staff – and reporters — working inside.
The incident comes as the security around the Capitol continues to be on full alert after the attack on January 6, where insurgents stormed the Capitol trying to stop the Electoral College votes from naming Joe Biden as the new president.
Several lawmakers took to Twitter to share thoughts and prayers for those at the building as the situation unfolded.
Two stretchers could be seen on live footage being taken out of an ambulance and a helicopter landed next to the Capitol building.
A statement from the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department said: “A call came in at approximately 1:05 pm to the unit block of Constitution Ave, NE, for the report of a possible shooting.” MPD did not immediately provide any other details.
Temporary fencing had been erected around the Capitol’s outer perimeter but was removed late last month, but it remains in place closer to the building. Capitol Police have said that a reduced perimeter will stay up while it works with “congressional stakeholders and law enforcement partners to strengthen our security posture.”
Some republican lawmakers have been outspoken about removing the barricades outside the Capitol, ones that may have potentially saved lives today. “I just checked earlier this morning. There are no serious threats against the Capitol. I think we’re way overreacting to the current need,” McConnell said in March. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) argued that it was time for the Capitol to be open to the public, and to take down the fencing put up after the Jan. 6 insurrection that same day.
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