- Capitol Police are investigating a bomb threat near the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.
- Officials said a man in a truck said he had an explosive device and they’re trying to apprehend him.
- Congressional staffers were asked to shelter in their offices, and police evacuated the area.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Capitol Police are investigating a possible explosive device outside the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, on Thursday.
Officers said they evacuated the area around the building, which is located near the US Capitol and the Supreme Court.
Capitol Police said on Twitter that officers were responding to a suspicious device in a pickup truck near the building.
“This is an active bomb threat investigation,” Capitol Police tweeted. “Please continue to avoid the area around the Library of Congress.”
-Ryan Nobles (@ryanobles) August 19, 2021
The Metropolitan Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Washington Field Division, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Washington Field are on the scene to assist Capitol Police. DC Mayor Muriel Bowser said she’s been briefed on the situation and advised people to avoid the area.
Law enforcement officials told the Associated Press they were working to determine whether the device in the vehicle was an “operable explosive” and whether the person in the truck, identified as a man, was holding a detonator.
Law enforcement officials told NBC News they had not identified anything in the truck that resembles an explosive device. The concern was based on statements of the driver, who said he has explosives. The man was writing on a dry erase board to communicate with officials, according to NBC.
-Julie Tsirkin (@JulieNBCNews) August 19, 2021
Law enforcement officials said they were alerted of the situation and responded to it shortly after 9 a.m.
“Around 9:15 this morning a man in a black pickup truck drove onto the sidewalk in front of the Library of Congress,” Capitol Police Chief Thomas Manger said in a news conference around noon local time. “We responded to a disturbance call. The driver of the truck told the responding officer on the scene that he had a bomb and what appeared, the officer said, appeared to be a detonator in the man’s hand.”
“We’re trying to get as much information as we can to find a way to peacefully resolve this,” Manger said. “We are in communication with the suspect.”
Manger said officials have not yet determined the man’s motive. Law enforcement officials have identified him as Floyd Ray Roseberry, a 49-year-old white male, believed to be from Grover, North Carolina.
-Igor Bobic (@igorbobic) August 19, 2021
The man had livestreamed himself on Facebook, officials and reporters said, but the video and his account have since been taken down. He had been expressing anti-government views. “I’m ready to die for the cause,” he said in a clip of the video Huff Post’s Ryan Reilly posted to Twitter.
Capitol Police set up a perimeter around the Capitol building and congressional staffers were asked to shelter in their offices. The Cannon House Office Building, the Library of Congress’ Jefferson Building, and the Library of Congress’ Madison Building were evacuated, per Capitol Hill reporters.
Congress is out of session this week, meaning most lawmakers are not in the city, though there are still people working in the buildings.
-Andrew Solender (@AndrewSolender) August 19, 2021
“Due to the nature of the incident, this will likely be a prolonged law enforcement response,” the House’s sergeant-of-arms William Walker informed Capitol staff in a message.
The Republican National Committee building near the Capitol was evacuated as well, The Washington Post’s Josh Dawsey reported.
The Supreme Court was evacuated, per CNN. The building is closed to the public due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Washington, DC, has been on high alert since rioters stormed the Capitol complex on January 6, resulting in numerous injuries and five deaths.
That same day, two pipe bombs were found outside the offices of the Republican and Democratic National Committees in the city. No one got hurt, though the individual who planted the explosive devices remains unknown. The FBI has called on the public to come forward with any additional details on the suspect’s identity.
This story is developing and will continue to be updated.