Four "concerning" minutes: Capitol Police gun arrest raises security concerns
A four-minute delay in the Capitol Police arresting a staffer who brought a gun into a House office building Thursday morning has raised new security concerns that could become part of a committee hearing.
Why it matters: The incident occurred as the building was being locked down for a visit by President Biden. The breach highlights continued vulnerabilities nearly a year after the Jan. 6 insurrection. "We've got a lot of work to do to continue to protect the Capitol," Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) told Axios.
- Ryan, who oversees the Capitol Police as chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch, said he'd been talking to his staff about a committee hearing on the current state of the Capitol Police before the incident occurred.
- "This will definitely be included in that," he said.
Between the lines: Congress has faced a series of tumultuous and violent events since Jan. 6, including a car attack in April that left the driver and a Capitol Police officer dead and a bomb threat in August that led to an hours-long standoff.
- Thursday's incident occurred just hours before the president and Vice President Kamala Harris arrived for a memorial ceremony honoring the late Sen. Bob Dole (R-Kan.).
Driving the news: A staffer from the House Chief Administrative Office was arrested and charged with carrying a pistol without a license after entering the Longworth House Office Building with the gun, the Capitol Police said.
- According to a police statement, officers "spotted the image of a handgun in a bag on the x-ray screen" and "the man was tracked down four minutes later and arrested."
- "The department is looking into what happened before, during and after those four minutes," the statement added.
What they're saying: Ryan told Axios the delay is "concerning."
- "We're short-staffed, everyone's still burned out, we need to be ramping up and have more technology, more everything," Ryan said.
- Roughly 130 Capitol Police staff have retired or resigned since Jan. 6, the Capitol Police said Wednesday.