tv The Situation Room CNN October 3, 2013 5:00pm-6:30pm EDT
then she's effective driving towards those police officers. they didn't know what her intent was or what she was doing. you could see at that point they're firing. >> deb feyerick, thank you so much. you have been watching our coverage. we will continue live coverage of this shooting near capitol hill. a very chaotic situation that started at the white house and led here to capitol hill. we have a police officer who has been injured in a car crash, medevaced out. we have a suspect in custody and apparently, this woman who was driving so erratically as law enforcement officers see it, had a child in the car as well. that's it for "the lead." i'm jake tapper. i turn you over to wolf blitzer. he's in "the situation room." jake, thanks very much. happening now, breaking news. gunfire erupts on capitol hill, temporarily forcing congress and the surrounding government buildings into lockdown. just ahead, we'll have the very latest on the car chase that began near the white house that started it all. plus government shutdown day three. no apparent end in sight. president obama blasting house
republicans, accusing them of holding the american people for ransom. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." let's begin with the breaking news. this was the scene just a little while ago, only a couple blocks from where we are here in washington. police swarming capitol hill after gunfire erupted, forcing members of congress to temporarily shelter in place. we're told it all began with a car chase that started at the white house, ended not far away up on capitol hill, when the car slammed into a police vehicle, injuring an officer. a source says the suspect, a woman, was shot and a child was in the car. we're just getting the first audio of those shots being fired from a witness recording it all on her cell phone as it happened.
[ gunfire ] >> our brian todd is joining us live from the scene with the very latest. i know you also want to share with our viewers some extraordinary new video of the actual chase. hold on a second, brian. we're having trouble hearing you. your audio is not good. now you're okay. start again from the beginning. >> reporter: okay. all right, wolf. we'll pan just to your left here, set the scene for you. there are evidence tags on constitution avenue to your left, my right. obviously a massive police presence here. streets still blocked off. what we're told by witnesses is as we move back over towards this way and the scene behind me, where the confrontation played out. as you're coming back over here, the botanical gardens are right behind me. two witnesses have told us the car chase which started near the white house, we're told, came down this way, went that way on
>> reporter: so that is the scene as the network filmed it right near where that confrontation with police took place. i spoke to a witness a short time ago, a witness named frank schwing who was very nearby when that scene played out. here's what he had to say. >> -- opened the passenger side, tried to get the driver out. at that point the driver slammed in reverse, slammed into a cruiser, did a 180, took off and at that point there were half a dozen or so shots fired. >> reporter: so to recap that, frank schwing, the witness and sources telling us that the scene, where the confrontation took place, played out on the west side of the capitol just behind me toward the botanical
gardens here where, according to this witness, the suspect in the car was stopped by police, then immediately put her car into reverse and slammed into a police vehicle, knocking it back. that's when shots were fired toward the suspect's vehicle. we're told now from law enfor enforcement sources, those shots were fired by law enforcement personnel toward her vehicle. one police officer injured in that collision and one suspect is in custody, we're told her condition is being monitored. we're not quite sure about her condition at this moment. that's what we have for you now. a very dramatic scene playing out on the streets behind me and to my right. >> the video is from the u.s.-government funded arabic language tv network based here in washington, broadcast in the arab world. there you see it right there. i will let it play out once again. it's a black vehicle, a lexus, with connecticut license plates. the woman is driving that vehicle. there's a child inside as well.
you can see it ignoring orders from police to stop, driving very erratically at high speeds up on capitol hill. there you see it continuing up there. it's obviously going to not have a very good ending as it goes on. this is the vehicle that actually started near the white house, 15th and pennsylvania avenue. that's when uniformed members of the secret service stopped this woman, asked her what was going on. she then quickly apparently dodged them, made a u-turn and headed up towards capitol hill. this is near the end where she's going. the arabic you're hearing is the network announcer speaking about what he's seeing right there. it's obviously very, very scary stuff. brian, stand by. we will get back to you in a moment. dana bash is up on capitol hill. she was there getting ready to interview the senate majority leader, harry reid, it was around 2:15 p.m. eastern when all of a sudden, that shelter in place alert was distributed up on capitol hill. the house side, the senate side,
everybody being told don't move, get into a room and stay put. there's a situation under way. dana, pick up the story. >> reporter: that's right. i'm in the capitol right now. we were -- i'm on the third floor. we were on the second floor where the senate majority leader's suite office is, and we were in one of the rooms, as you said, getting ready for an interview, and we just heard the loud buzzer that comes on when the alert system, the emergency alert system, goes off here in the capitol, the system that was put in place after september 11th, 2001. to be honest it was a little hard to make out what the announcer was saying on there, but we did make out shelter in place, and it was very clear immediately that we couldn't leave the room where we were. everything was very calm, but it was very clear that there was something not so calm going on outside. so we were trying to get a little bit of information from sources in law enforcement and
sources in leadership in both sides of the capitol but the bottom line is the system actually worked here the way it should. and one interesting point is that capitol police officers who i just maybe as a personal point of privilege, i and our colleagues come to work at the capitol every day. they are among the bravest and many, many very nice people who do very good jobs and today was an unbelievable example of that. guess what, wolf, they're not getting paid because of the government shutdown. didn't matter. they all did their jobs, they did their duty. they were able to follow the rules, follow the formula for what happens in these situations and everything went remarkably smoothly considering not just with us in our little corner, but with the few tourists and visitors who were actually here during the shutdown and the staff and the senators and lawmakers. so again, without knowing if they are ever going to get pay back, but they are currently
working without pay and did really remarkable work today. >> we salute them, of course. we saw some of the senators, bernie sanders, scurrying over, getting inside the building. sharon brown scurrying, getting inside the building. this was a really, really tense moment up on capitol hill. i will get back to you in a moment, dana. i want to hear how the senate majority leader, harry reid, was reacting as this shelter in place announcement, this urgent announcement, was put forward. stand by for a moment. tom foreman is joining us now. he's over at the magic wall. tom, map out how all of this happened, what we know. >> this is spread out over about two miles in one of the most secure environments you'll find anywhere in the country. it started over here at the white house. this is the entire white house grounds here. if you're not familiar with washington, d.c., we will try to give you a feel for what's going on here. if we bring it out, we can talk about these barriers they have at various places. you can see the little posts right in here. that's to keep you from driving up to the white house. same down here, the planters here, gates to keep you from
getting up close. if you look at the white house grounds overall, you can see that really, there's a standoff zone that goes quite a ways out from the white house itself, which we've got right over here. that's purposely, to keep vehicles from getting close and people from getting close to the white house. we don't know exactly which portion she hit here. we just know at the moment that there was this problem over at the white house initially, then it went into this high speed chase. now, i will give you a bit of a lay of the land. if you came from the white house here, you could go down pennsylvania avenue this way, that's the most direct route to the capitol, or you could come down any one of these streets here where you would join up on to constitution avenue which runs along in here. we know that somehow she wound up here, allegedly we have been hearing going 85 miles an hour. that would be quite a speed on these streets where normally it's 25 miles per hour is the limit. in any event, down here, we have been watching this video over and over again. it would appear that at some
point, this woman went this way and then came up here. this is that circle, it's a statue to president garfield. u.s. botanical gardens are here. brian todd reporting from this area. this is where you see the video of her car stopped, then after that, she starts moving and she moves up here and then comes around this side of the capitol, and that's where you get into the final section back here which is the other part of the capitol. you can see where this played out, where the final scene ended here. you see the car stopped right next to this building, this would be the normal place and there are these units here. that's where the car wound up sort of jammed back right in here. wolf, this is really quite an extraordinary thing. i think one of the things they will find in the after action reports as they go through this, you think about the environment we're in, think about the fact we had the shooting at the navy yard, only a couple yards from here, just a very short time ago, it is really quite remarkable that this played out over so much distance with so much potential danger and it
finally came down to this final location in here before it actually reached the point where the officers shot at her to stop her, because they initially had her stopped at one point. that's a little lay of the land. truly, i must say, this area in which this played out is absolutely one of the most secure places in terms of the amount of security and number of police officers and number of patrols and cameras and everything else that you will find anywhere in the country, this couple of miles from the white house to the capitol. >> i'm sure we will get more video coming in from the closed circuit cameras in washington, d.c. they are all over the place here in the nation's capital. we'll stand by for that. good explanation. much more coming up on the breaking news, including the latest on that child believed to be in the suspect's car. there you see a police officer carrying that child. we'll have a live report on what's going on. also, we're awaiting a police news conference on the chase. representatives from the u.s. capitol police, metropolitan
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we're following the breaking news here in washington, more specifically up on capitol hill. a very, very scary scene only within the past few hours. a shooting incident, a wild car chase, now all of a sudden it's over but the investigation is presumably only just beginning. we're standing by for a live news conference, capitol hill police, washington, d.c. metropolitan police, fbi, they're all getting ready to brief us. we'll of course have live coverage. there you're seeing the scene of what happened. joining us now, two eyewitnesss to the dramatic car chase and the eventual shooting. joe and chuck harding are joining us right now. they live up on capitol hill. you guys, just walk us through what happened, starting with the beginning. where were you, what were you doing, what did you see and hear? >> we were sitting in our living room -- >> you live up there? >> we live up there at 113. we were just sitting in our
living room and progressing through the day, working on our laptops and trying to get some business done when we heard approximately 10 to 12 gunshots right outside of the office. >> did you know they were gunshots right away? >> my wife said those were gunshots. >> how did you know that? are you familiar with guns? >> not really, but i just knew that that was gunshots. >> what was your immediate reaction when you heard that? >> well, of course i was afraid. and my husband immediately ran outside to see what was going on. >> that was pretty courageous of you to do that. you let him do that. >> i did. i said i'm locking the door after you. >> so what happened when you got outside? >> well, there were law enforcement agencies rushing from every conceivable point in washington, d.c., helicopters overhead, s.w.a.t. team members proceeding to the location where apparently the lady in the
automobile had been stopped, and so i just started clicking some photos with my camera and trying to make a report of what was going on. after taking several photographs, of course, the police started to clear the street and asked us to move back, and then to return to our town houses. >> you had never -- you have been living up on capitol hill for awhile, right? >> i would say about two weeks. >> that's all? so you're new. this must have been a total shock to you, what was going on. >> we just moved here from oklahoma city. >> so all of a sudden, you see a shooting incident like this and what goes through your mind? >> well, the thing that probably scared me the most was they said there was a suspect on the loose. >> who said that? >> some of the police officers said that there was a possibility of someone that had eluded the scene. >> we now know that was not the case.
the police say this was an isolated incident, now been contained. the woman who was driving this black car is in custody and that's over with. >> right. you know, it was something, i think, to behold that all of these different police agencies, capitol hill, of course, then you have the supreme court and you have uniformed secret service and metro p.d. coming to the scene and you can tell they had it wrapped tight very quickly. it was comforting to see all the different agencies working together and snapping to very quickly. >> tell our viewers why both of you came to washington. >> we came to washington, d.c. because my husband heads up a ministry called awake america, and i would like him to tell you about that. >> very briefly. >> we just are providing spiritual assistance and counsel to all the members of congress
that need it. we've put the bible back on capitol hill march the 19th which was something that congress had actually passed a resolution in order to print back in 1782 so we're just here to try to assist the members of congress in any needs that they might have spiritually. >> you never thought anything like this would happen, especially the first two weeks you're here in washington. >> absolutely not. >> glad you guys -- you okay? >> yes. >> you're okay, too? >> definitely. >> good. thanks to both of you for joining us. thanks for your report. let's bring in our national correspondent, deborah feyerick. she has more information on the woman who was driving that black vehicle. what are you learning, deb? >> reporter: we have a few additional details. we do know that a task force made up of fbi agents and secret service are preparing to execute a search warrant on the woman's home. we are being told by law enforcement sources that the home is in connecticut. so they're preparing to do that
right now. trying to get some information as to who she is and why she may have done what she apparently did. i did see an image of the woman immediately following the crash. she was being led away on a gurney and she is sort of surrounded by a machine and they call this a chest compression machine and it sort of tries to keep the heart beating while they do other things. police are not updating her -- updating us, i should say, on the woman's condition. we are being told by sources that in fact, she was hit several times. law enforcement firing into the driver's side of the vehicle, the black car, that she was driving. we're also being told that there were no shots returned towards law enforcement, that it seemed that the police were the ones who were shooting at her. again, she was not listening to them, she was fleeing, she had already hit one police car. so clearly, they wanted to neutralize the situation. that's probably not the best word to use but they wanted to
control the situation. they did not know there was a child in the car, a 3-year-old, 2 or 3-year-old child in the car at the time all of this was going on. but that's what we can tell you now. also, cameras are being pulled from the entire area to see what may have started this altercation and why she was behaving as she was. >> basically, what we suspect right now is that all the gunshots were fired by police at the vehicle to stop the vehicle from doing potential disastrous damage. >> reporter: that's correct. they didn't know what her motive was, what her intent was. they didn't know whether in fact this was part of something much larger. she had been at the white house or trying to gain access to a portion of the white house, then when she took off, she was headed towards the capitol. so they just didn't know. they had to basically play this as a worst case scenario to try to get the situation under control. things in washington already at a heightened state of alert not only because of the navy yard shooting just a couple weeks ago, but also because of the situation there with congress
and the stalemate. so everybody is a little bit on edge as it was. they just did not know and they had to make sure they responded in such a way that no one else would get hurt. wolf? >> you can see how fast she was driving there in that car chase and the potential damage that could unfold. deb feyerick, thanks very much. once again, we expect to learn a lot more about what's going on. we're standing by for a police news conference on the chase. there you see the microphones, people are already gathering, reporters are gathering literally within the shadows, you see the capitol right behind those microphones over there. we'll have live coverage and hear what local d.c. police, capitol hill police, what fbi officers and agents are saying. [ sneezes, coughs ] i've got a big date, but my sinuses are acting up. it's time for advil cold and sinus. [ male announcer ] truth is that won't relieve all your symptoms. new alka seltzer plus-d relieves more sinus symptoms
secret service officers, fbi agents, they're all getting ready to brief us on this really, really scary incident that happened up on capitol hill just a few hours or so ago. there's an all-clear now. the lockdown has been lifted. but it was frightening as a black vehicle left right near the white house, escaped police there, all of a sudden started driving at high speed up to capitol hill. watch this video provided to us by the arabic language u.s. government funded television network. they had a camera, they had a reporter on the scene. i will let it play out. watch this. [ gunfire ]
>> we will get an arabic translator to translate those words to english. stand by. we will share that with you as soon as we translate that. let's bring in our justice reporter, evan perez. what are you hearing, evan? >> reporter: this situation is just so unusual, as you said. this is one of the most secure parts of the city. obviously you have high speed chases in d.c. and other parts
of the city, but this is the center of government, from the white house -- according to our federal sources, law enforcement sources, they don't believe she was necessarily trying to ram into the white house complex. she struck one of the barriers as she was trying to make her getaway, then speeds down the streets down there 80 miles an hour estimated speeds, and ends up over near garfield circle, which is where brian todd is reporting from. that's where you see the alhurra video pick up. that's the circle where you see the first shots being fired, at least the first shots that we have on video. this is where the reports go out to law enforcement all across the city, which is shots fired near the capitol, near garfield circle. they chase her and they come to a stop near the supreme court. the black infiniti is the picture we keep showing which is where the suspect, an
african-american woman, is being taken away. we still don't know from law enforcement sources what her status is, but at this point, they know there is nothing else to worry about, the situation is all clear. now they're trying to figure out what started this all. no one knows exactly what prompted her to end up by the white house. she's from connecticut. we know according to law enforcement officials. what brought her to washington, why was a child in the car and why was she driving so erratically. those are the questions they're trying to answer right now. >> hopefully we will get some answers, preliminary answers. we know this investigation is only just beginning. we're standing by, waiting for a news conference, representatives from the fbi, the secret service, washington metropolitan police, capitol hill police, will all be joining, going over to the microphones and briefing us on what's going on. it's a pretty scary situation but everything you're hearing corroborates what we heard from the capitol hill police chief a little while ago, that it looks
like it's just an isolated incident and there is no indication whatsoever that this has any connection to terrorism. >> reporter: that's right. the fbi now is preparing essentially to hand over the situation to the local police. it doesn't appear there's going to be any federal prosecution here. i think they're helping out to search the home in connecticut to figure out if -- well, try to explain what happened here, perhaps talk to family members or any neighbors who might know the suspect, the person who was in the middle of this car chase. but right now, it just looks like a random car chase situation, very little to explain it, really, from the law enforcement standpoint. so i'm sure what the capitol police will be trying to tell us is, you know, what exactly went down with the officers shooting there. we don't believe there was any
other shooting other than by the police, who are obviously trying to stop a very dangerous situation that was unfolding there. >> police tell you to stop your vehicle, get out of the car, that's what you do. >> reporter: especially in that area. >> up on capitol hill or near the white house, this is the most sensitive parts of the united states right there. all right. evan, stand by. i want all of our viewers to listen to one witness describe what he saw. at the time he thought the driver was a man. we now know the driver was a woman. here's what he told joe johns. >> when i heard the gunfire about five or six rounds, my wife and i just dropped to the ground and we stayed there for about five minutes, then another onslaught of cop cars with automatic rifles and everything. so after awhile, i thought everything was under control so i get up with my phone and i went, recorded what i could. as i was moving towards the action. then i saw the cops taking a baby about 2, 3 years old, out of the car, and they put the
baby in the cop car. at that point i thought it was over. but then the officers ushered me on and evidently he got out of the car and he was running on foot. >> the shooter? >> the shooter. i didn't see the shooter. but i thought it was over. everything was under control but it wasn't. evidently he got out of the car and just took off. then it was just mayhem. >> scary situation there as described by this eyewitness. we will hopefully get some more answers. the investigation now fully under way. what happened, why did this woman, this suspect, drive so erratically leaving the white house, heading up to capitol hill even in the midst of a police chase. we're standing by for this news conference, expected to begin fairly soon. more questions than answers at least for now. much more coverage right after this. ♪ ♪ turn around ♪ every now and then i get a little bit hungry ♪ ♪ and there's nothing good for me around ♪ ♪ turn around
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let's get to more on the breaking news we're following, the car chase that started at the white house and ended with police gunfire right up on capitol hill. it put the entire capitol complex on lockdown and the house just gave a bipartisan standing ovation to capitol police. >> i know that i join the majority leader in expressing our gratitude to the capitol police. [ applause ]
>> obviously a lot of gratitude to capitol hill police for what has happened, for the enormous amount of work they do on a daily, daily basis, even when many of them are not being paid because of the government shutdown right now and many of them furloughed but still on the job. let's go up to capitol hill right now. athena jones is joining us with more on the scene there. what's it like now where you are? >> reporter: hi, wolf. well, right now it's a much calmer scene than it was a few hours ago. there are still some streets that are shut down, a big police presence. there are police directing traffic on some of the few streets that are open. right here, i'm seeing tourists walk by, i'm seeing joggers. a lot different than it was a few hours ago. just to give viewers a sense of where this all went down and when, there's the capitol dome right there behind me, and the capitol building. the street separating where we are now from the u.s. capitol is called constitution avenue. it's a major artery here in washington, d.c. that lots of
visitors would come and frequent because of the museums that line it along the mall. so that's the street that the last stage of this car chase took place on. we witnessed it from right over here. you can see part of the building, it's russell senate office building. that's one of the three buildings that house senate offices. in russell, there's a place called the russell rotunda on the third floor, a place where all the media sets up, where you will often see us doing live interviews or live reports. i was just doing a live report at the top of the 2:00 p.m. hour. a few minutes later i stepped out on the balcony just off the rotunda and i stepped right into the midst of this car chase. by the time i stepped on the balcony, i heard three or four quick gunshots in rapid succession and i saw about a dozen police cruisers racing up constitution avenue just on the other side of this building. they stopped about two blocks further up. it's not very far away, on the edge of another senate office building, and not too far from the supreme court. that's where everyone got out. and the rest of this, the end of
this car chase went down. wolf? >> athena jones on the scene for us as she often is, thanks very much. what would make a woman in a car in that black vehicle drive towards the white house, then ignore secret service instructions and speed away towards capitol hill? we're standing by for a news conference. maybe we'll get some answers from d.c. police, capitol police, fbi agents, secret service officers. they're all on the scene for us. [ male announcer ] this is brad. his day of coaching begins with knee pain, when... [ man ] hey, brad, want to trade the all-day relief of two aleve for six tylenol? what's the catch? there's no catch. you want me to give up my two aleve for six tylenol? no. for my knee pain, nothing beats my aleve. help the gulf when we made recover and learn the gulf, bp from what happened so we could be a better, safer energy company. i can tell you - safety is at the heart of everything we do. we've added cutting-edge technology, like a new deepwater well cap
by for a news conference. police about to brief us on what happened, a dramatic car chase, eventual shooting. we're going to get some answers to serious questions momentarily. we'll have live coverage of that coming up. all this happening now on day three of the government shutdown and president obama is sharpening his tone earlier in the day before what happened up on capitol hill. speaking in rockville, maryland, just outside of washington, he blasted what he called the reckless strategy by republicans which he says is now putting the economic recovery of the united states at risk. he says the senate version of a short-term spending plan to fund the federal government would pass the house with support from democrats and some republicans if it were allowed to come up for a vote. >> i want everybody to understand this. there are enough republicans and democrats in the house of representatives today that if the speaker of the house, john boehner, simply let the bill get
on the floor for an up or down vote, every congressman could vote their conscience, the shutdown would end today. the only thing that is keeping the government shut down, the only thing preventing people from going back to work and basic research starting back up and farmers and small business owners getting their loans, the only thing that's preventing all that from happening right now, today, in the next five minutes, is that speaker john boehner won't even let the bill get a yes or no vote. because he doesn't want to anger the extremists in his party. this is not about spending. this is not about fiscal responsibility. this whole thing is about one thing. the republican obsession with dismantling the affordable care act and denying affordable health insurance to millions of
that seems to be the only thing that unites the republican party these days. through this whole fight, they have said the american people don't want obama care, so we should shut down the government to repeal it or delay it. but here's the problem. the government's now shut down, but affordable care act is still open for business. strong words from the president. we're standing by right now. right now we're standing by for a news conference up on capitol hill on the police chase and the shooting right near the capitol. we're expecting to speak also live with congress madge michael mccall, the chairman of the house homeland security committee. he's been briefed on this incident up on capitol hill. we'll speak with him next.
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the police conference at the top of the hour. we're told we'll have live coverage. as it was unfolding harry reid was getting ready to speak to our dana bash. dana is joining us from capitol hill. i know you delayed that interview with the majority leaders because of what was going on only a few hundred yards away from where you were. >> reporter: i did, but once we knew things were calm and under control, we did begin the interview talking about the issue dominating, of course -- the government shutdown. beginning about with the fact that the house has passed many several mini-bills, so i began
with that. first i want to ask about a certain exchange that might have gotten a bit of attention, about you if you can help one child with cancer, why wouldn't you do it? >> listen -- why one against the other? >> why would we want to do that? i have 1100 people at nellis air force base sitting home. they have a few problems of their own. to have someone of your intelligence suggest such a thing may -- >> i'm just asking the question. >> -- may be irresponsible. i'm not known for being real articulate, but what i was trying to say is we can't be piecemealing all this stuff. we have centers for disease control that's closed. we have thousands and thousands of women and children who are not able to get their w.i.c.
monies. we have disabled veterans who are working but not getting paid. we have half a million people at the defense department on furlough. so we have to look at everything. we can't just look at one part of this. realize this -- people talk about why don't you negotiate? remember the thing that everyone has to punds we -- or i was contacted the first pafr of september by john boehner. he said we've got to get something done here on this. he said, great, here's my deal. you have to take our number, $988 billion. i said i can't go that. we have 70 billion more than that. i can't agree to that. he said we've got to do that. so we spent more time together, and i agreed. that was really hard. my caucus really didn't like that. we took a real hit.
we negotiated. he said you agree to that, we'll have this to you right away. right away has never come. >> reporter: so you're saying he told you, promised you in a private meeting he would pass a clean bill with no strings attached, particularlily on obama care. >> that's why we did it, that's why we agreed to one of the lower numbers. that's one of the largest compromises i've been in congress. that was a big deal. $70 billion just like that. so -- >> and he couldn't deliver. >> reporter: so are you saying that he misled you? that he lied? >> i think he really intended to do that, but remember what he tried to do. to get things out of the house, what he did and then he got stuck with the obama care, to get some votes from the sew-called tea party. i was going to call them
crazies, but i shouldn't do that. >> you think that's what this is about? he's simply trying to protect the job and has broke the the government to a screeching halt for that reason? >> john boehner knows this would pass overwhelmingly if he would let the democrats vote on it. we know that he only needs 18 republicans, and certainly 18 republicans, so, yes, i think that the speaker has to be more concerned about our country than he is about his job. >> reporter: you really think effectively calling him a wimp is going to make him change his mind. >> i haven't called him a wimp. >> reporter: you're right. that's my word, not yours, but i say he doesn't have courage much that's pretty tough. >> i don't know how to describe it. all i know is taking care of the debt ceiling, it's done. all he would have to do is let people vote on it. you can describe it as wimp, courage, whatever you want, he should do this. this is bigger than harry
reid/john boehner. it's for the country. >> wolf, we'll have more of this at 7:00 p.m. eastern. one quick note, harry reid we were just told, did put a phone call into the injured capitol police officers, and the officers said the only thing i wanted to so is make sure that everyone was safe. >> dana, thank you. happening now, breaking news right here in the nation's capital. gun shots and a wild car chase, from the white house to capitol hill. we have remarkable new video. we're standing by for a news conference by d.c. police, the fbi, the secret service and other agencies. plus -- a child found in the car that led police racing across the city. we'll have the latest on that, and the fate of the driver. and two powerful republican senators ka ultimate on an open microphone. the conference about the government shutdown they probably didn't want all of us
to hear. well to welcome or viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." we begin this hour with a terrifying confrontation from the doorstep of president obama over at the white house to the entrance of the united states capitol. [ gunshots ] new video captures the car chase. the gunshots and the raw fear in a city already on edge after only two weeks after that d.c. navy yard slaughter, and in the midst of the government shutdown. we're standing by for a news conference by d.c. police and orel federal authorities on this breaking story. there you see the microphone on capitol hill. we'll have live coverage as soon as they come there to start briefing us and answering our
the arabic station funded by the government, that's why you were hearing arabic. the news conference is about to begin. >> i want to talk about the incident today. at about 1412 hours today, a black infiniti sedan struck temporary security fencing, and one of our uniformed division officers at an outer perimeter checkpoint of the white house at 15th and e street northwest. the vehicle then fled east on pennsylvania avenue. there were multiple crime scenes as a result of the vehicle fleeing. there were multiple shots fired at several different locations. this case is under investigation by the metropolitan police department, with assistance from the u.s. capitol police, secret service, and the federal bureau of investigation. that's all i have, but i'll take a few questions. >> reporter: sir, is there any way this could have been an accident, whether or not she
didn't know where she was going? >> this incident is under investigation, but at this point an unauthorized vehicle attempted to gain access at a very outer perimeter checkpoint. i want to stress that. this was an outer perimeter checkpoint of the white house. beyond that checkpoint there were multiple other checkpoints that someone would have to go through, but there is this unauthorized vehicle approached the checkpoint, our officers acted appropriately. the vehicle then fled and in fleeing struck one of our officers as it departed that initial scene. >> reporter: what is the condition of the ethnicity of the deceased? >> i don't think that's being released. >> reporter: what's ruled out? >> that's also under investigation, but uniformed police officers and capitol officers. >> reporter: where were the shots fired? >> there were no shots fired at the white house these other
locations had shots fired. >> reporter: -- the officer struck? >> i'll let the chief of capitol police talk about that. i'll turn it over -- >> reporter: can you i.d. yourself again? >> ed donovan from secret service. >> good evening, chief of the suns capitol police. you've already heard the preliminary information, regarding what happened at the white house. subsequent to that, our officers attempted to make a stop at garfield circle. the vehicle eluded them and continued on up behind us at first and constitution avenue. it appears our officer in an attempt to pursue the vehicle struck a barricade. ultimately the vehicle stopped at 2nd and maryland northeast, where we were able to capture the suspect p. >> reporter: do you have the status of the officer that -- >> i personally spoke with the officer, he is doing well.
he's a 23-year receipt van of the united states capitol police, and he's doing very well. thank you for asking. >> reporter: is he at the hospital? how seriously injured is he? >> he was at the hospital when i spoke with him, but he's going to be fine. >> reporter: was there a child in the car? >> i don't have his specific injuries. >> reporter: how was he injured? >> his vehicle apparently struck the barricade behind us. it appears all around the capitol the security worked exceptionally well. we did have a brief lockdown of the capitol. we were able to lock things down and clear the event extremely quickly, keeping everybody safe, notifying everybody of what was going on. we actually cleared the scene rather quickly. as you know, we had a briefing probably within the hour of what was going on. we obviously were investigating the incident -- we, i mean multiple law enforcement agencies -- and this appears to
be an isolated singular matter with, at this point, no nexus to terrorism. thank you. >> reporter: how can you rule out terrorism? >> from the facts and circumstances we have thus far. >> reporter: there are indications that she was of somali descent? >> are you asking me or telling? >> reporter: the suspect. >> we're actually not talking about the suspect at this time. we are not releasing information on the suspect. >> reporter: where is the child that was in the car? >> reporter: what was the motive? >> reporter: can you talk about the child in the car and where the child is now? >> my understanding is there was a 1-year-old child in the car. i believe actually one of our officers initially rescued the child and took the child to initial medical care in the vicinity here, and then the child was taken to the hospital. >> reporter: was it a boy or
girl? >> pardon me? >> reporter: the barricades, were they thought? >> let me turn it over to chief lanier. >> reporter: boy or girl? ethnici ethnicity? >> i do not have that information. >> let me try to answer a couple questions real quick. i will tell you up front, there are we won't answer any questions about the suspect. all the information we're giving you is preliminary. there is some video that has been released. i would caution you that that video only captures a small part of this incident. there were things that were not captured on the video before and after, obvious li. as of right now, we do know they were shots fired in at least two locations during this pursuit. the pursuit was 15th and e down to the 100 block of maryland affidavit.
it went several blocks, involving both the united states secret service and the united states capitol police. right now the suspect in the vehicle, we do know was struck by gunfire, and at this point has been pronounced. the suspect has been pronounced at this point. the child is approximately a years old, and is in good condition, and in protective custody. right now, it is all very preliminary. we don't know which officers fired, how many rounds were fired. i will say that both at the white house and at the capitol, the security perimeter worked. they did exactly what they were supposed to do. they stopped a suspect from breaching the security perimeter, in a vehicle at both locations. i would say both of the united states secret service and capitol police officers, from what i have seen so far in this investigation, acted here heroically in trying to stop this suspect from entering the security perimeter at both locations. we have two officers injured, one from a capitol, one from
secret service. fortunately both of them will be okay, but two officers injured just doing their jobs. i will take a few question, but i will not answer any questions about the investigation as it pertains to evidence or the suspect at this point? >> reporter: where was the suspect killed --ivities the last gunfire was in the 100 block of maryland avenue, and the suspect was pronounced at sometime later. >> reporter: chief, do you think this could have been an accident or intentional? >> all information we have right now is this does not appear in any way to be an accident. this was a lengthy pursuit. there were multiple vehicles rammed, there were officers that were struck and two security perimeter that were attempted to be breached. it it does not appear in any way this is an accident. we don't know that yet. >> reporter: why aren't you releasing more information? >> we will not release first of all we would make next of kin
notification. >> reporter: was she armed? >> woulder not going to comment on any information regarding evidence at this point. >> reporter: can you take us through the path from the white house that person traveled to get to maryland avenue? where was the car going? where were the different places the shots were fired? >> i can tell you there were two places where shots were fired that we're aware of. this is still preliminary. it started at 15th and e street, came down pennsylvania avenue, at some point entered garfield circle. there were shots fired after the suspect vehicle rammed into a secret service vehicle, and then the vehicle then continued on first street to constitution avenue, up constitution, around the barriers, and then onto 100 block of maryland avenue, where the vehicle crashed and additional shots were fired there. >> around the barriers? >> we're not sure yet exactly. where he know there was contact made by at least one vehicle, we don't know if there were other
vehicles, but we know the barriers did go up. we don't know that yet until we finish the reconstruction. >> reporter: secret service and capitol hill police -- >> right now the preliminary information is that both agencies had officers that fired. two more questions and then we're done. the metropolitan police department will be investigating the case. we are getting support from fbi, capitol police and secret service. >> reporter: any verbal exchange with the suspects? >> i can't comment on that. one more question. >> reporter: in the end she crashed? >> the crash at 100 block of maryland avenue. at that point, this is very close to the security booth, the security officers from the capitol, there was another round of gunfire at that point. it's all we're giving you right now is the facts we know of what has happened. i'm not ruling anything out. i can tell you that i'm pretty confident this is not an accident. all right. thank you. well, what i said was it
does not appear to be, and i just want to reiterate the heroic work of the united states capitol police officers at multiple locations, in addition to rescuing the child out of the vehicle. at this location and at 2nd and maryland northeast, our officers kept the perimeter secure, and responded quickly and heroically, and locked the scenes down. thank you very much. there he is, kim dine, the capitol police, kim dine, the chief of the capitol police saying he doesn't believe there was any nexus to terrorism, believes it was, in his words, an isolated singular matter, but kathy lanier, the chief police for the greater washington metropolitan police department says she's not ruling anything out right now. they're not releasing the name of the woman, the driver, kathy lanier, the d.c. police chief saying this woman, the driver,
was pronounced dead following the shooting. sdpoo there's lots to assess, lots to digest right now. we'll have complete coverage. stand by. also, they saw the car chase, they heard the gunfire. they felt the fear. we'll hear from more witnesses to this dangerous confrontation that occurred. that's coming up. [ male announcer ] this store knows how to handle a saturday crowd. ♪ [ male announcer ] the parking lot helps by letting us know who's coming. the carts keep everyone on the right track. the power tools introduce themselves. all the bits and bulbs keep themselves stocked. and the doors even handle the checkout so we can work on that thing that's stuck in the thing. [ female announcer ] today, cisco is connecting the internet of everything. so everyone goes home happy.
. what a day here in washington. the secret service says a woman tried to drive her car through barriers, couldn't do it, and injured a police officers, a secret service officer, then drove up to capitol hill, where the chase continued, resulting in her being shot to death by police. let's bring in the republican congressman from texas, representative michael mccall. he's chairman of the homeland security commit aye. thanks for coming in. >> thanks for having me, wolf.
>> you just hear the briefing we got from the capitol police, from the d.c. metropolitan police. i know you've been briefed by the homeland security department. what else can you share with you? >> we know this is a 34-year-old african-american woman from connecticut, possibly with some mental health issues that she tried to storm the barricade at the white house entrance near treasury. in the process, actually, ran into a secret service agent. then we had the high-speed chase that ended up here on capitol hill, which unfortunately very tragically resulted in her being shot and killed. as you know, she has an 18-month-old daughter. but i will say that the job that the capitol police did here today, was heroic. they are to be commended for protecting not only the members of congress and staffers, but the american public as well, who were out here visiting. >> so the child in the kar was in fact her daughter, right? >> yeah.
that's my understanding. the daughter is now in child protective service custody, to determine what to do with her. again, a very tragic incident. i think it's important to note also in my conversation with both homeland security and the fbi, is that thj is not -- they don't have any ties or nexus to terrorism. that's always my biggest concern. when i see an incident like this, that's my first question. it hasn't been ruled out completely. the fbi is digging into the background of this individual to see if anything is there, but i think right now it looks like they don't have any evidence that would tie this to an act of terrorism. >> a 34-year-old resident of connecticut. we know she's dead now. was she american? was she an immigrant? do we know where she was from? >> that's what we don't know at this point. i know one of the questions at the press conference was -- is she of somalian descent. that would obviously raise some
issues, but i don't have that information. i tacked to the sergeant at arms as well. that's something that the fbi is right now scrubbing into. >> have you been told her name? >> i have not. i have nod. they say it looks lie a singular matter. you're saying you can't completely rule that out, about you that certainly would appeared to be preliminary on the basis of what you say she had a history of mental illness. do we know that for sure? >> well, i got that from multiple sources. they think she may have had some mental health issues. obviously the way she responded at the gate near the white house, and then turning around and hitting secret service, you know, and the fact is that, from what i understand, she didn't have any weapons in the car as well. so we don't know the motivation yet. that's what we're digging into, as well as her background, but i think it does appear at this point in time to be more of an
isolated event. >> mike mccall is the chairman of the house homeland security committee. mr. chairman, that's for coming in. >> thanks for having me. much more coming up. we'll hear from an eyewitness. stay with us. ♪ ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] the new twin turbo xts from cadillac. 410 available horses. ♪ room for four. twice the fun. ♪ ♪
joining me now, patty bill. she was an eyewitness to the incident. patty, what happened? >> pretty frightening. i work right there at faith in action, which is on 2nd street, can comes to the corner of maryland. first i heard a lot of sirens, a lot of commotion. you could hear from the police cars, which took me to the second floor, which is a very
good view -- wide open windows, i looked out. that's where i saw the vehicle speeding down, the black car that hit it appeared to be the police officer's crash can that was standing there, and a police car which turned it sideways. there's a window booth where the policemen stand and the security guards that guard us every day. at the time the car was surrounded by police and a lot of armed men. that's where the gunfire began. a lot of it i want did you see the child in the car? >> that's when i saw when they were trying to pull someone from the car and realized it was a child. it takes you back at that moment. as soon as the car was pulled from the car, the gunfire let loose i want you heard the gunshots illustrates it appeared someone got out, and it looked like a rush of people running. at that particular time, you
didn't know if some suspects were involved. >>ou must have been scared. >> very frightened. >> what do you do? >> at first you go to the window wondering what is happening. when you hear the police cars and sirens, as an interested person, you said to look. when the gunfire started, i step back from the window, but out curiosity i want to do peer around just to see. then it became very involved. is a lot of gunfire, a lot of police, and at that particular time i came downstairs to ask the police what was going on and what could we do to be safer? >> how are you doing now? >> i'm better now. it was very emotional earlier. it's a very tough and frightening thing when you have that much gunfire and bullets flies. wreefd a lot going in d.c. >> we certainly have. thanks very much for coming in. that's it for me.
before we get to the debate. cnn's brian todd has the latest. >> reporter: newt and stephanie, the latest information is from police, the suspect a woman has been pronounced debt after police fired into her vehicle at the corner of second and maryland avenue northeast, just a few blocks east of here up capitol hill. this confrontation started when the suspect in a black infiniti tried to breach a police barricade near the white house. at that point the suspect's car struck police officers. chase gave way. just behind me, at the botanical gardens there was another confnt