Suspect Dead After Police Chase In DC Ends In Gunfire - KMSP-TV

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Suspect Dead After Police Chase In DC Ends In Gunfire

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Washington, D.C. -

A woman driving a black Infiniti sedan tried to ram through some temporary fencing at an outer perimeter checkpoint at the White House on Thursday, then led police on a chase that ended in gunfire outside the Capitol, witnesses and officials said. The suspect in the vehicle was struck by gunfire and has been pronounced dead.

Tourists watched the shooting unfold on Constitution Avenue outside the Capitol as lawmakers inside debated how to end a government shutdown. Police quickly locked down the entire complex for about an hour, and both houses of Congress went into recess.

The pursuit began when a car tried to ram a security barricade blocking the stretch of Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House. Upon the unauthorized vehicle fleeing the scene, the vehicle struck an officer as it was heading east on Pennsylvania Ave. As a result of the vehicle fleeing, there are now multiple crime scenes that are being investigated.  

Witnesses said at least 20 police cars chased the sedan toward Capitol Hill, where the car crashed outside the Capitol.

Tourist Edmund Ofori-Attah said he walked toward the scene, curious about what was going on.

"Then I heard the gunfire" and hit the ground, he said.

The woman driving the car had a 1-year-old child with her, which was rescued by an officer and taken to a hospital for care. The child is in good condition and is in protective custody.

This appears to be an isolated event, unrelated to any terrorist activity.

There were shots fired in two locations, and the pursuit went several blocks.  Two officers were injured in the incident. One was from Capitol Police and the other from the Secret Service.

"We heard three, four, five pops," said Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., who was walking from the Capitol to an office building across the street. Police ordered Casey and nearby tourists to crouch behind a car for protection, then hustled everyone into the Capitol.

"There were multiple shots fired and the air was filled with gunpowder," said Berin Szoka, whose office at a technology think tank overlooks the shooting scene.

The shooting comes two weeks after a mentally disturbed employee terrorized the Navy Yard with a shotgun, leaving 13 people dead including the gunman.

Before the disruption, lawmakers had been trying to find common ground to end a government shutdown. The House had just finished approving legislation aimed at partly lifting the government shutdown by paying National Guard and Reserve members.

People standing outside the Supreme Court across the street from Congress were hurried into the court building by authorities.

The White House also was briefly locked down after the incident at Capitol Hill and the stretch of Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the compound was closed to pedestrians. Secret Service said the procedures were precautionary.

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