On Monday afternoon, law enforcement officials claimed that a suspect pulled out what appeared to be a weapon at the Capitol Visitor Center. Subsequently, the man from Tennessee was shot at and is currently in stable, but critical condition.
A female civilian bystander was injured by the shrapnel, but no U.S. Capitol Police officers reported any injuries.
Larry Russell Dawson, once released from hospital, will face charges of assault with a deadly weapon and assault on a police officer while armed. Dawson underwent surgery, but is listed in stable condition on Monday.
The bystander’s injuries are described, according to officials, as being minor, and she was taken to hospital.
Dawson attempted to go through metal detectors on Monday at the Capitol Visitor Center entrance. When the magnetometers went off, he was stopped by security, and removed what appeared to be a weapon. Sources say the officer then shot him.
Dawson, who is a pastor of St. Luke’s Church, has previously been arrested on charges of assaulting a police officer in October after an outburst occurred in the chamber of the House of Representatives. In that incident, the suspect “loudly stated to Congress that he was a prophet of God” and that he didn’t obey man’s law. In an article published by The Daily Beast, he then allegedly ran from officers and resisted arrest. He was handcuffed allegedly for assaulting a police officer and unlawful conduct at the Capitol.
The Washington Post reported that he missed a November court appearance writing a letter to the court stating that he has been called chosen, and “sent unto you this day”. In it, he claims that he is not under the law, and refuses to comply with the court order.
He also previously wrote on his church’s website that he was electing to lead a movement urging Congress to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. He writes that “our assignment is to do the will of God in the Earth” and part of the “movement” is to help people gain financial independence.
The White House briefly closed the North and South fence lines in a precautionary measure after the incident.
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