A U.S. Capitol Police officer was killed and another injured after a man drove a car into a security barricade at the Capitol complex on Friday, acting Chief Yogananda Pittman said.
The driver was shot after jumping out of the car with a knife and failing to respond to verbal commands and “lunging” at the officers, Pittman said. The suspect was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead a short time later.
Four senior law enforcement officials briefed on the investigation identified the suspect as a 25-year-old man from Indiana, Noah Green.
The fallen officer was identified as William ‘Billy’ Evans. Pittman said he was an 18-year veteran of the Capitol Police, and a member of the Capitol Division’s First Responder’s Unit.
The extent of the injuries to the second officer were not clear.
“I just ask that the public continue to keep U.S. Capitol police and their families in your prayers. This has been an extremely difficult time for U.S. Capitol police after the events of Jan. 6, and now the events that have occurred here today,” Pittman said.
Robert Contee, acting chief of the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department, said that his department would take over the investigation. “It does not appear to be terrorism related,” Contee said.
Contee and Pittman both said the suspect was not someone who was previously known to their departments.
The attempted breach happened at the north barricade vehicle access point at around 1 p.m. ET, officials said. The Capitol complex was locked down for about two hours after the incident.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ordered flags at the Capitol be flown at half-staff in honor of the fallen officer, who she called “a martyr for our democracy.”
“May it be a comfort to the family of Officer Evans that so many mourn with them and pray for them at this sad time,” Pelosi said.
Congress is in spring recess for the week, so lawmakers had returned home and were not working in the building.
A heavy law-enforcement presence quickly descended upon the complex, including dozens of National Guard troops. Two stretchers were seen being taken out of an ambulance and a helicopter landed on the east front of Capitol.
A message sent to congressional offices said, “Due to an external security threat,” there was ” no entry or exit is permitted at this time. You may move throughout the building(s) but stay away from exterior windows and doors. If you are outside, seek cover.”
Security at the Capitol has been heightened with extra security measures and personnel in place since a mob of Trump supporters stormed the complex during the Jan. 6 electoral vote count before a joint session of Congress. One officer, Brian Sicknick, died as a result of injuries during the riot, and two other officers died by suicide in the weeks after the violence.
Dareh Gregorian is a politics reporter for NBC News.
Leigh Ann Caldwell
Leigh Ann Caldwell is an NBC News correspondent.
Jonathan Dienst is a reporter for WNBC-TV in New York, leading its investigative reporting team and covering justice and law enforcement issues.
Lauren Egan and Tom Winter