lockdown

Staffers gripe about lack of communication during Capitol lockdown
House sergeant-at-arms acknowledges missteps regarding suspicious aircraft incident

Staffers are criticizing the lack of response from the Capitol Police amid Tuesday’s lockdown (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call file photo)

After reports of a possible aircraft in restricted airspace over Washington on Tuesday, U.S. Capitol Police halted access to Capitol grounds. But a lack of communication left staffers confused and in the dark.

Although the lockdown lasted nearly 50 minutes and was “cleared without incident,” according to a Capitol Police statement, several staffers relied on social media and word of mouth for information.

Suspect Fires at Police During Chase Near Capitol
Capitol building, House and Senate office buildings locked down briefly

The U.S. Capitol was locked down on Tuesday due to police activity in the area. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A man fired a shot out the window of a car being chased by police during the afternoon rush on Tuesday, prompting a lock down of the U.S. Capitol and its office buildings, authorities said.  

Staffers were notified in an email alert of late afternoon police activity in the area, and ordered those inside the Capitol complex to find a safe location.