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Gunfire forces brief lockdown on U.S. Capitol

capitol lockdown

capitol lockdown Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images

UPDATED 7:46 PM: A Connecticut woman who used to live in Brooklyn was shot dead Thursday after a dramatic car chase throughout Washington D.C. that started with a police altercation and ended with gunfire that sent the Capitol into a brief lockdown, according to officials and published reports.

The woman, identified by The Washington Post as Miriam Carey, 34, rammed security barricades near the White House then raced up Pennsylvania Avenue toward the Capitol, where Congress was in session.

Police gave chase and fired at the car from two different locations, reportedly shooting nearly a dozen times, and the chase finally came to halt as the woman was reportedly hit multiple times.

Police searched the car and found a young girl about 1-year-old inside, but she was unharmed, according to published reports.

The woman appears to have been unarmed.

At least one, and possibly two, police were injured during the chase, but neither had serious injuries, according to The Washington Post.

The Capitol police, deemed “essential” staff, were at work despite the government shutdown, but they are not being paid.

Senator Roger Wicker of Mississippi told MSNBC he heard sirens and saw police motorcycles go by and then heard four to six shots fired.

“I was walking in the direction of the gunshots, so I stopped and I noticed Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont was headed my way. We both took cover behind an SUV,” Wicker said. “And then police officers came and told us to get down.”

The lockdown order at the Capitol was called off after about an hour. Officials said there was no apparent connection to terrorism.

The incident rattled Washington just three weeks after a government contractor opened fire at the Washington Navy Yard, about a mile and a half from the Capitol, killing 12 people and wounding three others before he was shot to death by police.

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