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Twitter a mass of confusion as Capitol Hill shooting unfolds
What started as an attempt to ram gates at the White House turned into an incident in which shots may or may not have been fired at the United States Capitol and resulted in an injury for at least one Capitol Police officer.
The incident prompted a lockdown at the Capitol and the surrounding offices at just about 2:18 p.m. Eastern time, which led to frantic reports on Twitter, many of them from members of the media:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was a tad calmer:
As the lockdown continued, quite a few commentators began discussing the pay status of the Capitol Police officers dealing with the incident. Slate economics writer Matt Yglesias initially stated the officers were working without pay during the ongoing government shutdown:
Then corrected himself:
Writer John Scalzi added this comment:
Twitter was awash with corrections about the pay situation:
The Capitol Police itself doesn’t have a Twitter or Facebook presence, but the Washington, D.C., Police Department did issue a few tweets with warnings to avoid the area around Capitol Hill.
About an hour after the incident took place, the Capitol Police did hold a rather frantic press conference in which Chief Kim Dine said there is no evidence the event was an act of terrorism or anything but an “isolated incident.” He added the officer who was injured appeared to be breathing and stable. Dine denied reports that shots were fired at the Capitol.
Later in the afternoon, police confirmed that the woman who led police on the chase from the White House to the Capitol was fatally shot.
Once the lockdown was lifted at around 2:50 p.m., quite a few members of Congress tweeted to thank the Capitol Police and report their staffs were safe.