Breaking News: Shots Being Fired on Capitol Hill?

UPDATE: MSNBC is now reporting that the sounds might have been an elevator mechanic banging heavy equipment in a elevator shaft. With one reportedly hospitalized for a panic attack, if this is indeed the source of the sounds, it will clearly indicate exactly how silly our national security system is.

UPDATE by Michael Hampton: Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) is liveblogging from in his office. He says the Capitol Police have concluded their investigation, but haven’t yet told them what’s going on. The person taken to the hospital was one of Kingston’s staffers, and has since been released.

This story is breaking now. We’ll provide details as they become available. From WTOP:

WASHINGTON – People inside the Rayburn Building are sheltering in place as Capitol police investigate “the sound of gunfire in the garage level of the Rayburn House Office Building,” said an announcement on the internal Capitol voice alarm system.

There is no confirmation of gunfire.

The report has prompted a lockdown of D.C. public schools in the area, as well as private schools.

Montgomery County Council member Howard Dennis, who works for the Government Reform Committee, tells WTOP his office in Rayburn is locked down.

“We got the beeps as soon as the gunshots were heard, and actually they were preceded by one of our staffers having seen the cops running down the hallway — appearing to be chasing someone,” Dennis said. “We all got the e-mail to shelter in place.”

The AP is adding:

Within minutes of the reports, Rayburn halls were virtually empty and police were not allowing anyone to leave or take elevators or stairs to the garage.

The event occurred at the end of a week of unusually tumultuous series of events that ironically enough, began in the same building. FBI agents armed with a search warrant seized documents and computer material from the first office of Rep. William Jefferson in an weekend raid. Jefferson is at the center of a federal bribery investigation.

At the Capitol, police quickly closed all doors, stopping people from either entering the building. Tourists who were in the building were herded into a first-floor chamber in the middle of the building. Other corridors on the House side of the building, where lawmakers had already left for the Memorial Day recess, were deserted.

Jeff Connor, a spokesman for Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., said Capitol Hill police notified the office that gunfire was heard in the Rayburn building garage.

“They specifically said there was the sound of gunfire on one of the garage levels of the Rayburn House office building and asked staff to remain in their offices,” Connor said.

Flipping the tube on now.

Stephen Gordon

I like tasteful cigars, private property, American whiskey, fast cars, hot women, pre-bailout Jeeps, fine dining, worthwhile literature, low taxes, original music, personal privacy and self-defense rights -- but not necessarily in this order.

  1. There are shots in the capitol garage (maybe), and _schools_ are getting locked down? WTF?

  2. I’m sorry, since when is being present a crime worthy of detention? The cops siezed everyone in the building, refusing to let them enter or leave, for an indefinate period of time while they try to determine if a crime has even been committed? This is why I stay out of DC; even it’s visitors are now classified as government property…

  3. Rep. Jack Kingston, (R-Ga.) who is sheltering in place, reports that the SWAT team moved into the House gym and that one of his staffers, who was in the gym, has been sent to the hospital for, uh, emotional trauma.

    No sign of a gunman as yet.

  4. I always love to read stories about how brave and selfless our rulers are. I think all these politicians and bureaucrats deserve a Bush Medal of Freedom.

  5. Man… I was hoping some congresscritter had just Budd Dwyer-ed themselves. Sad that we can only dream of corrupt politicians with those kind of cajones these days.

  6. If you were thinking about buying an AR-15 or AK-47, get it now. This may be used as a rally point to reinstate the “assault” weapons ban.

  7. From the UPDATE (at the top of the article)

    MSNBC is now reporting that the sounds might have been an elevator mechanic banging heavy equipment in a elevator shaft. With one reportedly hospitalized for a panic attack, if this is indeed the source of the sounds, it will clearly indicate exactly how silly our national security system is

    so… not a malfunction, but elevator related.

    Though, it’s not clear at the moment. But if the elevator story is true, well, LOL

  8. I heard a reporter call into Sean Hannity a moment ago talking about how they were being held in the cafeteria and more people were being pushed in, and that they had been yelled at by the police and such and told not to move anywhere.

    The guy seemed to see nothing wrong with this, but it seems to me they are basically detaining everyone who works there without rhyme or reason because something that sounded like gunfire was heard.

  9. I wonder where he would get the compressed air. They must have pipes available in the elevator shaft.

  10. Ah, I didn’t see the update; I picked up your comment from email. Anyway, I’ve provided a further update and am still watching as closely as I can.

  11. It’s good to observe how the thugs’ thugs react to specific perceived threats, whether those be Cessnas above the dome, or suspected cordite-propelled pellets below it. File for future reference.

  12. We have been told by staff of shots fired and the SMELL of smoke in the lobby of the Rayburn House building.”
    Russian Intelligence Analysts are reporting that the ongoing constitutional crisis that has erupted in the United States has taken a decidedly deadly turn as counter-coup forces attempting to block access to the American capitol engaged in a brief gun battle with US Army Special Forces leaving at least 3 dead.

    Russian Intelligence reports further state that the United States Army has activated for this event their 4th Psychological Operations Group / Task Organization and which was the US military unit that coordinated the mis/disinformation campaign during the events of September 11, 2001 to such great effect.

    The causes behind this latest escalation between the coup and counter-coup forces in the United States stem from the American President’s attempt to wrest total control of his country from both its elected representatives and its judiciary,…