Capitol Police investigating car crash, fatal shooting near Supreme Court
U.S. Capitol Police are investigating an incident in which a man fatally shot himself after crashing his car near the Supreme Court early Sunday morning, USCP announced in a statement.
Driving the news: Shortly after 4am, a man drove his car into the vehicle barricade at East Capitol Street and Second Street, which was engulfed in flames as the man exited the vehicle, per the statement.
- The man then fired several shots into the air along East Capitol Street. He subsequently fatally shot himself as Capitol Police were approaching him.
- Capitol Police noted that no other injuries were reported and it did not appear that any officers fired their guns.
- "At this time, it does not appear the man was targeting any Members of Congress," the statement added. Most members are home for August recess. The Supreme Court also is not in session.
- The statement made no mention of a potential motive but noted that the shooter's background is being investigated.
In a second statement released Sunday afternoon, Capitol Police identified the man as 29-year-old Richard A. York III. York was a Delaware resident.
- Police are still unsure why York drove to the Capitol complex, the statement said.
The big picture: The incident comes at a period of heightened security for Congress, the Supreme Court and the broader political world.
- Supreme Court security has become a hotly debated issue since the leak of a draft opinion in May overturning Roe v. Wade, with the Department of Homeland Security warning of heightened risk to justices in the aftermath of the ruling the following month.
- Lawmakers have also been on high alert in the wake of several security incidents involving House members – against the backdrop of Jan. 6 and a consistent rise in threats against members in recent years.
- Members have also become entangled in a wave of threats primarily targeted at Justice Department and FBI officials in the wake of the Mar-a-Lago search.