WASHINGTON (AP) — A man drove into a barricade near the U.S. Capitol early Sunday morning and began firing in the air before fatally shooting himself, police said.
The incident occurred just before 4:00 a.m. at a vehicle barricade on East Capitol Street NE and 2nd Street SE, Washington.
Federal officials have warned of possible violent attacks on government buildings since the FBI searched former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago.Florida estate.
The attack is reminiscent of April 2021, when a man killed an 18-year veteran by ramming his vehicle into two Capitol police officers at a checkpoint. And after supporters of the then president stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021, many in the Capitol remain tense.
Authorities said the man, identified as Richard A. York III, 29, of Delaware, crashed into a barricade and his car burst into flames as he tried to get out. The man then opened fire, firing several shots into the air as police approached.
Capitol Police said the man shot himself as officers approached. He was later pronounced dead.
Capitol Police Chief Tom Munger said officers didn’t hear him say anything before he held a handgun and fired “indiscriminately” in the street and walked towards the Capitol. Authorities said they were investigating whether the man may have set the car on fire and the crash was not the cause.
A police officer at the scene saw the man fatally shoot himself as he approached, Munger said.
Chief said investigators located the man’s address in Delaware and Pennsylvania and learned he had a criminal record over the past decade, but his motives remained unclear and he had no connection to the Capitol. .
“There is no information at this time to indicate his motives,” the manager said.
Police said it “doesn’t look like the man was targeting a member of Congress,” and investigators are investigating the man’s background to determine his motives. Very few staff work at the Capitol.
Officials said no other injuries were reported and police did not believe officers opened fire.
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