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Gunfire turns USA lawmakers' baseball practice into 'killing field'

"Please join us in praying for the people who were injured this morning at the Republican practice for the Congressional Baseball Game", the statement said.

Steve Scalise, the House majority whip, was among several shot at a baseball field on Wednesday in Alexandria, Va. Scalise was shot in the hip and underwent surgery, according to a statement released by his office.

The wounded Capitol Police officers were identified as David Bailey, who was treated for a minor injury, and Crystal Griner, who was shot in the ankle.

Capitol Police officers who were in Scalise's security detail wounded the shooter, who was taken into custody. Scalise was listed as in crticial condition in the hospital. They included the gunman, according to the Washington Post.

U.S. Capitol Police Chief Matthew R. Verderosa said his officers who were wounded "are in good condition" and should recover quickly. "The United States Capitol Police is dedicated to its mission to protect the U.S. Capitol, Members of Congress, staff and the visiting public, and today we saw how our officers' extensive training and quick response saved lives". His wounds were not believed to be life-threatening. His death was announced later by President Donald Trump.

Federal Bureau of Investigation special agent in charge Tim Slater said it was "too early to say" whether it was an act of terrorism, or whether Scalise was targeted. Rep. Jared Huffman, D-Calif., said his team was practicing when they heard about the attack on the Republicans.

Brooks estimated that there were 50 to 100 shots fired.

"Scalise was playing second base, his position, and all of a sudden we heard a loud - what sounded like a gunshot, very loud and very close. We said it was Republicans and he kind of started walking to the field", Representative Ron DeSantis told Fox Business Network.

Barton said there were four Capitol Hill police officers there, and two Alexandria officers arrived within five minutes. And having no self-defense, the field was basically a killing field.

Williams, the team coach, told reporters he was hitting ground balls when he heard what sounded like a auto engine backfiring.

Asked whether he thought it was a random shooting, Republican lawmaker Mo Brooks, who was preparing to bat at the time, told CNN: "It sure as heck wasn't an accident".

One of the Republican Party lawmakers who happened to be at the Congressional Baseball practice where a shooting happened Wednesday was Arizona Senator Jeff Flake. We will focus on reports from police officials and other authorities, credible news outlets and reporters who are at the scene. "I'm a former prosecutor and, yeah, he was going after elected officials, congressmen".

The shooting occurred the day before the Republican team is scheduled to play in the annual Congressional Baseball Game at Nationals Park.

Scalise remains in critical condition at a hospital.

Pence also touched base with the Capitol Police chief and a number of lawmakers, including Rep. Roger Williams of Texas.

"The Vice President and I are aware of the shooting incident in Virginia and are monitoring developments closely", President Donald Trump said in a statement.

Mika served as a White House aide under former President George Bush, where he coordinated volunteers, worked with press advance and security details and managed VIP visits.



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