MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Members of U.S. Congress, including Minnesota’s Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Rep. Tom Emmer, are speaking out after an incident at the U.S. Capitol resulted in the death of two people, including a police officer.
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.”READ MORE: Aurora FC Home Matches Will Stream Live On CBS News Minnesota
Two sources confirm to CBS News that the suspect has died. One of the officers has died, U.S. Capitol Police Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman told reporters.
“It is with profound sadness that I share the news of the passing of Officer William ‘Billy’ Evans this afternoon from injuries he sustained following an attack at the North Barricade by a lone assailant. Officer Evans had been a member of the United States Capitol Police for 18 years. He began his USCP service on March 7, 2003, and was a member of the Capitol Division’s First Responder’s Unit. Please keep Officer Evans and his family in your thoughts and prayers.”
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.”
The incident comes nearly three months after rioters overran the building in a deadly attack on Jan. 6. Fencing was erected around the Capitol complex in the wake of the Jan. 6 attack, and thousands of National Guard troops sent to Washington.
Security fencing around the perimeter of the complex was taken down last week, 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 Jan. 6 attack.READ MORE: Next Weather: Severe Thunderstorms Rumbling Across Northern Minnesota
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.
Minnesota Politicians Respond To The Incident
U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar released the following statement shortly after the incident.
“The brave men and women of the United States Capitol Police put their lives on the line every day to protect the heart of our democracy. We are hoping and praying for the recovery of those injured in the line of duty. Thank you to all the officers who continue to stand watch to protect the Capitol and all who work inside.”
Representatives Tom Emmer and Pete Stauber also released statements.
Praying for the brave @CapitolPolice officers who were injured in today's security breach of the Capitol. Thank you to the officers who put their lives on the line ever day to keep us safe.
— Tom Emmer (@RepTomEmmer) April 2, 2021
I am praying for the USCP officers and first responders involved in the incident at the Capitol. https://t.co/bWgi3sGbce
— Pete Stauber (@RepPeteStauber) April 2, 2021
Those statements came before the officer was confirmed deceased. Gov. Tim Walz, later in the afternoon once the officer’s death had been confirmed, shared a tweet saying, “I know from my time in Congress that the men and women who protect the Capitol are brave, selfless public servants. My prayers are with the Capitol Police today as they mourn another senseless loss of their own and I wish the officer injured a speedy recovery.”
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I know from my time in Congress that the men and women who protect the Capitol are brave, selfless public servants. My prayers are with the Capitol Police today as they mourn another senseless loss of their own and I wish the officer injured a speedy recovery.
— Governor Tim Walz (@GovTimWalz) April 2, 2021