Top House GOP leader shot at congressional baseball practice

A gunman opened fire on the GOP baseball practice in Alexandria, VA. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) and numerous aides were shot. He said about five people were wounded.

President Trump says the assailant in the shooting that happened in Alexandria, Virginia this morning has died from his injuries.

Hodgkinson has an extensive history of traffic violations and petty offenses in St. Clair County, Illinois, spanning from 1989 to 2011, according to online county court records.

Five people were taken from the scene to hospitals, Alexandria's police chief, Michael Brown, told reporters.

"But for the Capitol police and the heroism they showed, it could very well have been a large-scale massacre". T. Hodgkinson. The official was not authorized to discuss an investigation by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The FBI is "exploring all angles" in the case, Special Agent in Charge Tim Slater said, responding to a question about whether the attack was an act of terrorism.

Federal investigators are conducting emergency traces on two firearms - a rifle and a handgun - in connection with the shooting in Virginia, an ATF spokesman tells NPR's Carrie Johnson. Two of the wounded were Capitol Hill police who were at the scene, witnesses said.

The shooter, a middle-aged white male with dark hair, is alive and in custody in what was described by police as a "deliberate attack" on unarmed civilians.

Rep. Brooks recounted the events of the shooting on CNN Wednesday morning.

House Speaker Paul Ryan's office said Scalise's wounds were not believed to be life-threatening and that a member of the security detail was also shot.

U.S. Rep. John Larson Tweeted that he and his staff stand in solidarity with Republican colleagues and that they are grateful that the first responders were there and acted so quickly.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected", he said. "You can imagine all the people in the field scatter".

Emergency personnel are seen through a window with a bullet hole in Alexandria, Va. "I'm sad that he was shot but he actually saved everybody's life by being there"'. He added that at least two officers fired at the gunman.

Mo Brooks, an Alabama Republican, told CNN he was on third base during the baseball game when he saw Mr Scalise, who was on second base, shot. He told them semiautomatic fire began to ring out during practice, and he realized it was an active shooting situation.

Rep. Bradley Byrne said the incident should serve as a reminder of the "hard work, dedication, and sacrifice" of the Capitol Police.

Zack Barth, a legislative correspondent working for Rep. Roger Williams, R-Texas, was among those shot, according to a statement from Williams.

Rep. Steve Pearce of New Mexico, who was at the practice but unharmed, tweeted prayers for the victims.

Mr Brooks said everyone on the field scattered as 50 to 100 shots were fired.

"As we wait for more information, we must remember that we are all Americans, even when we disagree".

President Trump said in a statement that he and Vice President Mike Pence were monitoring developments closely.

Mr Trump said: "We are deeply saddened by this tragedy". We are praying for swift recoveries for those who were injured and we are thankful for the bravery and quick action of U.S. Capitol Police and local first responders to stop the attacker and treat those who were wounded. Pitting members of one party against another, the contest supports charities ranging from the Boys and Girls Clubs to the Washington Literacy Center. The annual game has been played since 1909.

As NPR's Jessica Taylor reports from the neighborhood: "This is people going about their normal mornings, probably not even knowing that there were members of Congress that were practicing a few blocks down the road here".

This is adeveloping story. The conditions of the others who were shot were not immediately known.

  • Leroy Wright