Officer, suspect dead after vehicle rams into Capitol barricade

REUTERS  Joshua Roberts  Files

REUTERS Joshua Roberts Files

One of the officers who was injured was taken by police auto to hospital; the other was being transported by emergency medical crews, the officials said.

But permanent barriers remain in place on all the roadway entrances to the Capitol, well-manned by police and national guard.

But Washington Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Contee indicated that a terror link was not suspected at this stage.

The USCP stated that one suspect was in custody and the individual, as well as the two wounded officers, were "transported to the hospital".

Friday's crash and shooting happened at a checkpoint near the U.S. Capitol as Congress is on recess.

US Capitol Police said that one of the police officers had also died, while the other two officers are hospitalised.

The law enforcement officials told the AP the suspect was shot and was taken to the hospital in critical condition.

The officials could not discuss the matter publicly and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.

Capitol Police later said the incident occurred at Constitution Avenue.

Police block a street after a vehicle drove into police officers near the US Capitol building in Washington US
Police block a street after a vehicle drove into police officers near the US Capitol building in Washington US

The U.S. Capitol has been surrounded by a security fencing perimeter since the January 6 riot of pro-Trump supporters who attempted to prevent the counting of electoral college votes for President Joe Biden.

Shortly after 13:00 local time (18:00 GMT) the Capitol Police alert system sent an email to lawmakers and their staff ordering them to stay away from exterior windows and doors.

The incident occurred as both the House and Senate were in recess, though both buildings have staff - and reporters - working inside. It is unclear if the shots were fired by law enforcement or suspects at this time.

"This has been an extremely hard time for US Capitol police after the events of January 6, and now the events that have occurred here today", she continued.

One of the officers who was injured was taken by police vehicle to the hospital; the other was being transported by emergency medical crews, the officials said.

They were called upon soon afterward to secure the Capitol during Biden's inauguration and faced another potential threat in early March linked to conspiracy theories falsely claiming Trump would retake the presidency. The US Capitol complex was placed on lockdown after the shooting and staff were told they could not enter or exit buildings. Video showed National Guard troops mobilizing near the area of the crash.

Video from reporters at the scene posted on Twitter appeared to show a auto that had crashed into a barrier.

But CBS News reported that security officials had already warned congressional staffers of a threat before the auto ramming.

President Joe Biden said he and First Lady Jill Biden were "heartbroken" about the incident.

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