U.S. Capitol Police kill man during traffic stop turned chase

Thursday, July 16, 2009

U.S. Capitol Police shot and killed a man yesterday after a traffic stop became violent; two officers were slightly injured.

Police reported that the incident began when officers attempted to pull over a white Mercedes for a routine violation. This occurred at about 5:15pm local time in the 100 block of Massachusetts Avenue NW. The suspect sped away, almost running down two officers, striking a parked car and crashing into a police vehicle. He then crawled out of his car's window brandishing a gun. Officers demanded he drop the weapon, but he began shooting at them. They returned fire, fatally wounding the suspect; he was later declared dead at Washington Hospital Center.

Robert Drumm, a food-service manager visiting from Edmond, Oklahoma, reported hearing a collision and then, "boom, boom, boom, boom. A pause and then a bunch more [gunshots]"; he estimated hearing about a dozen shots in total. According to spokeswoman Sgt. Kimberly Schneider, "The subject disregarded repeated demands by police officers to put down the weapon that the suspect had. He began shooting a weapon at several U.S. Capitol Police officers. U.S. Capitol Police returned fire, hitting the suspect. [...] Our officers fired because they believed their lives were in danger." Two officers had minor injuries and were treated on site. As precautions, a U.S. Capitol access road next to the Senate was closed, and doors on the North side were locked. However, police believed the incident was isolated and unrelated to Capitol security.