Five people, including the House majority whip, Steve Scalise of Louisiana, were shot on Wednesday at a congressional baseball practice session near Washington DC.

Alexandria, Virginia, police chief Michael Brown said the five victims had been “transported medically from the scene”. Scalise’s office said he was in stable condition and undergoing surgery.

Brown said the FBI would be taking over the investigation “because this case involves an assault on a federal officer”. FBI special agent Tim Slater told reporters it was “too early to say right now” whether the shooting was an act of terrorism. He would not confirm whether the suspect was among the five people taken to hospital.

Congressman Scalise is badly wounded but in a stable condition

The victims included a member of congressional staff and two police officers, according to witness accounts from some of the approximately 25 Republican lawmakers present at the baseball practice. All five people shot were in stable condition, police said.

Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe said the state had no “prior information that would lead us to believe anything like this was going to occur”, and criticized gun laws in the US.

“This is not what today is about, but there are too many guns on the streets,” McAuliffe said, adding that 93 people were killed by guns every day.

Congressman Roger Williams of Texas said a member of his staff, Zack Barth, was among those shot. Lobbyist Matt Mika was identified by Congressman Kevin Brady as another of the wounded.

Capitol police said it had increased police presence at the Capitol on Wednesday morning out of “an abundance of caution”, as Republican politicians gave vivid descriptions of the shooting.


President Trump: I commend the policemen who prevented this incident from becoming a disaster

Senator Rand Paul, who was among the lawmakers on the field at the time of the shooting, said there was a single shooter and described the scene as “basically a killing field”.

President Trump in a statement has just confirmed that the assailant has died from his injuries.

Source: The Guardian