ALEXANDRIA, Virginia (INTELLIHUB) — House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, two armed congressional security aides (Capitol Police), and one other were struck with bullets when a gunman open fired with both a long gun (AK-47-style) and handgun at a Congressional baseball game practice session Wednesday morning.
Reports confirm that the House Majority Whip was hit in the hip and one of the aides was shot in the chest around 7:15 a.m. when “50-60 shots” were exchanged between the shooter and armed security personnel at Simpson Field.
Eyewitnesses to the event say that the shooter must have ran out of ammunition in his rifle when he switched to his handgun and continued to fire before police arrived withing 3-minutes returning fire.
“He kept firing,” one eyewitness said. “He hid behind the third base dugout.”
“It’s an active scene,” Alexandria Police Chief Michael Brown said during an initial press conference. “I am not taking questions at this point.”
Victims of the shooting have been transported to MedStar Medical Center for treatment along with the gunman who suffered “serious” wounds.
Rep. Gary Palmer (R-AL) was on scene and later reported that the two Capitol security aides who were struck with gunfire “bravely” returned fire to save lives.
‘It would have been a massacre if the security detail was not there,’ Palmer told Fox News.
The aide of Congressman Roger Williams (TX-R), who was shot, is expected to survive, according to reports.
A press conference is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. where officials are expected to give more details regarding the tragedy.
The FBI has taken lead on the “joint” investigation, according to FBI Special Agent Tim Slater.
Congressman Rodney Davis (IL-R) told Fox News that “political rhetorical terrorism” was the catalyst for the “senseless shooting” and also noted his concern over “social media.”
“We have to have unity in this country,” he said. “When you see rhetoric and stories of how policies can be killing people, this [shooting] could be the result of that.”
The congressman from Illinois said that he hid on top of a few people in the dugout to take shelter from flying bullets.
Update: The gunman has died of his wounds.