Two officers at Capitol building rammed by vehicle and injured, police say
Two officers were rammed by a car and injured at the barricade at the Constitution Avenue access point to the Capitol, U.S. Capitol Police said Friday, shortly after they sent an alert to staffers warning of an “external security threat.” Two sources confirm to CBS News that the suspect has died. One of the officers has died, Capitol Police Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman told reporters.
The incident comes nearly three months after rioters overran the building in a deadly attack on January 6.
Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman told reporters on Friday afternoon that the suspect rammed his car into the officers at 1:02 p.m. The suspect then exited his car and lunged at the officers, who then “fired upon the suspect.’
“It is with a very, very heavy heart that I announce one of our officers has succumbed to his injuries,” Pittman said.
U.S. Capitol Police said in a tweet that officers were “responding to the North Barricade vehicle access point along Independence Avenue for reports someone rammed a vehicle into two USCP officers,” then corrected that to say the incident was at the Constitution Avenue access point.
“A suspect is in custody. Both officers are injured. All three have been transported to the hospital,” the tweet said.
Capitol Police sent an alert to staffers at 2:30 p.m. saying that the threat had been “neutralized.”
“The external security threat located at all of the U.S. Capitol Campus Buildings has been neutralized, but the USCP is continuing to investigate out of an abundance of caution and there is still no entry or exit permitted at this time,” the alert said. The first alert to staffers, sent shortly after 1 p.m. warned of an “external security threat.”
Fencing was erected around the Capitol complex in the wake of the January 6 attack, and thousands of National Guard troops sent to Washington. Security fencing around the perimeter of the complex was, although a layer of inner fencing around the Capitol building itself remains in place.
The barricade is a checkpoint on the Senate side of the Capitol, and was in place before security fencing was erected after the.
Congress is in recess, and so most lawmakers are in their home states and not in Washington. However, other congressional staff, as well as reporters and police officers, are present.
The incident comes in the wake of the riot at the Capitol, which resulted in the deaths of five people, including a Capitol Police officer. Two Capitol Police officers also died by suicide after the attack, and dozens of officers were injured.