After multiple reports of shots fired at the United States Capitol building today, the Capitol and the White House have been placed on lockdown. The Associated Press is reporting that police report the shooter is down, and one woman, a bystander, appears to have been wounded.
In two separate incidents just moments ago, CNN reports that someone tried to jump the gate at the White House, and the White House was placed on lockdown as a result. Moments later, shots were fired at the Capitol Visitors Center, or CVC, where police engaged in a brief firefight with the shooter resulting in one officer being shot and the suspect being apprehended. An ambulance was seen speeding to the scene at the Capitol Visitors Center today.The White House lockdown was lifted quickly and, according to Talking Points Memo, was likely unrelated to the shooting at the United States Capitol building, specifically at the Capitol Visitors Center. Federal employees and press working at the United States Capitol and at the surrounding buildings have been ordered to shelter in place, and scattered reports are coming in as the press scrambles to piece together just what happened and where.
From Reuters and other reports, it appears that a shooter entered the Capitol Visitors Center and opened fire, there are no reports of who the shooter was firing at or whether anyone was injured other than one police officer who authorities reported was shot. As of now, it appears that no police have been injured.CNN is reporting that the DC police have released a statement, claiming that the shooter was an isolated incident and that there is currently no active threat to the public.
Although the U.S. Capitol is vacant of lawmakers this week, as Congress and the U.S. Senate went on a recess, this week is a big part of the Washington, D.C., tourism season. CNN estimates some 35,000 people have come through the Capitol Visitors Center this weekend, many of whom are present to see the White House Easter Egg roll, which occurred earlier today.
Easter weekend is typically a big weekend for the Washington, D.C., tourism industry, and tourists were informed by police today not to approach the U.S. Capitol after reports that shots were fired in the Capitol Visitors Center.
CNN reports that the suspect is a male, and he was shot by police. One woman was also injured in the shooting.The suspect has been rushed to the hospital after being shot by police at the Capitol Visitors Center, and it appears that the woman who was injured by the shooter was an innocent bystander not involved in the shooting at all.
This would be the third shooting in the U.S. Capitol in the past 20 years, reports Heavy. The first two saw several police officers dead, and the second shooting actually inspired the construction of the Capitol Visitors Center, which was built in order to allow tourists a place to congregate and to limit the amount of traffic that goes directly up to the doors of the U.S. Capitol.
According to Fox News, one witness claims that the shooting today at the Capitol Visitors Center sounded like a whole clip went off. Witnesses are reporting that many shots were heard by bystanders before the Capitol Visitors Center was evacuated by police.
Police surrounded the Capitol Visitors Center, and fire trucks and ambulances were seen swarming after the police reported that the suspect had been shot and taken into custody.
Updated 3:44 p.m.: CNN reports that no police were injured in the firefight.
[Photo by Stefan Zaklin/Getty Images]