An armed man walked into the Washington D.C. headquarters of the Family Research Council at 10:45 this morning and shot a security guard in the arm before being wrestled to the ground by several people, including the wounded guard.
According to D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier, the guard confronted the man after he entered the building that houses the conservative lobbying group’s headquarters. After a verbal exchange the man pulled out a gun and fired a shot. The guard is now at a local hospital where he’s in stable condition. “The security guard here is a hero, as far as I’m concerned,” Lanier added. “He did his job. The person never made it past the front.” The shooter is in FBI custody.
Both local police and the FBI are saying it’s too early to know the shooter’s motives. “We don’t know enough yet about him … or mentally what he’s thinking,” said James McJunkin, of the FBI’s Washington field office.
But reports from Fox News suggest the shooting was political. Fox says the shooter was posing as an intern and shot the guard “after expressing disagreement with the conservative group’s policy positions.” Those policy positions include opposition to gay marriage and abortion rights.
Fox is reporting that the shooter is a 28-year-old from Virginia who “may have had multiple weapons.” After being wrestled to the ground, the suspect reportedly told the guard, “Don’t shoot me, it was not about you, it was what this place stands for.”
Update: Local NBC reporter Jackie Bensen says the shooter was carrying a backpack that held two 15-round magazines along with “Chik-Fil-A promotional materials.” FRC President Tony Perkins publicly defended the fast food chain recently. “All Chick-Fil-A did was refuse to be bullied by the politically correct crowd,” he said on a radio show.
Update II: Though law enforcement has not yet been released the suspect’s name, NBC’s Pete Williams has heard from two sources that he is Floyd Corkins, a 28-year-old from Herndon, Virginia. A photographer who saw the suspect described him to Williams as “a 6-foot-3, 250-pound black male.”