House GOP whip Steve Scalise, 4 others SHOT in Virginia; suspect in custody
3:00pmEDT: Upadte from the New York Times –
A lone gunman who was reportedly distraught over President Trump’s election opened fire on Republican members of the congressional baseball team at a practice field in a Washington suburb Wednesday, using a rifle to shower the field with bullets that struck five people, including Steve Scalise, the majority whip of the House of Representatives.
President Trump, in a televised statement from the White House, condemned the “very, very brutal assault” and said the gunman had died after a shootout with the police. Law enforcement authorities identified him as James T. Hodgkinson, 66, from Belleville, Ill., a suburb of St. Louis.
Two members of Mr. Scalise’s Capitol Police security detail were wounded as they exchanged fire with the gunman in what lawmakers described as a chaotic, terror-filled ten minutes that turned the baseball practice into an early-morning nightmare.
Standing at second base, Mr. Scalise was struck in the hip, according to witnesses, and collapsed as the shots rang out, one after another, from behind a chain-link fence near the third-base dugout. Witnesses said Mr. Scalise, of Louisiana, “army crawled” his way toward taller grass as the shooting continued.
Aides to Mr. Scalise said he had undergone surgery at MedStar Washington Hospital Center and was in critical condition by mid-afternoon.
Multiple reports: House Majority Whip Steve Scalise is in stable condition after he, a congressional aide, and two Capitol Hill Police (also reported in stabel condition) were shot on an Alexandria, VA baseball field during practice for the Congressional baseball game this morning.
10:56amEDT: Multiuple outlets report shooter ID’ed as James Hodgkinson of Belleville, Illinois. WaPo: he has a history of violence. His social media shows ties to radical Christianity, hatred of Donald Trump, and his Facebook profile features a photo of Bernie Sanders.
9:51amEDT: Uday Trump needs to learn to STFU.
9:46amEDT: Steve Scalise’s office reports he is undergoing surgery after being shot on an Alexandria, VA baseball field during practice for the Congressional baseball game.
9:44amEDT: From TPM –
Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) … said [the alleged shooter] had dark hair and appeared to be in his 40s or 50s, wearing a blue shirt and jeans. Brooks described the man as “a little bit on the chubby side.”
9:15amEDT: MSNBC reports that shooter asked if Democrats or Republicans were practicing, and has spoken to other witnesses that suggest Republicans were being targeted by a terrorist.
8:58amEDT: Updated New York Times report has been posted to the web.
8:56amEDT: The latest information from Alexandria Chief Mike Brown – call came in at 7:09, police responded within three minutes; there was an exchange of fire between Capitol Hill police and the alleged shooter; five people were transported from the scene, and will not be identified at this time. Capitol POlice Chief Matthew R. Verderosa said officers on the scene responded immediately to gunfire, other Capitol Hill Police responded, and thanked the Alexandria PD and Fire Department; more information will be forthcoming as it becomes available. No questions were taken because the crime scene of “a closed incident under investigation” is still being analyzed.
8:45amEDY: Sen. Rand paul’s dramatic account of the incident to the Morning Joe hosts can be seen here.
8:42amEDT: ABC, NBC report Scalise’s injury is not life-threatening; MSNBC reports at least 3 others shot, some eyewitnesses say 4 others hit; condition of others nit yet known.
8:30anEDT: Rep. Mo Brooks witnessed a rifle – not a shotgun – being wielded by the shooter.
8:25amEDT: MSNBC reports shots came from behind the dugout; Rep. Duncan had chatted up the shooter before the shooting.
8:22amEDT: Sen. Rand Paul was a partial witness to the incident and was practicing in a batting cage; he told MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough that the large Capitol Hill Police presence was due to Scalise’s presence – ne gets a large security detail – and had a congressional leader not been there it would likely have been a “massacre.” The incident, added Paul, happened where the Republican team had been practicing from the Congressional baseball game.
8:13amEDT: At least 14 shots; Scalise aide, at least two capitol police gusrding the scene shot; suspect down or in custody.
8:11amEDT: Rep. Mo Brooks was an eyewitness to the incident:
8:09amEDT: MSNBC reports multiple casualties, Scalise is in stable condition at hospital.
8:05amEDT: MSNBC, CNN report suspect with a rifle in custody. Members of Congress and their staffs were practicing for a Congressional basebell game scheduled for tomorrow. A ‘pretty hefty” congressional security detail was on hand.