In this Jan. 25, 2017 photo, Sen. Gary Stubblefield speaks with constituents outside the Senate chamber at the state Capitol in Little Rock, Ark. Stubblefield is behind two major bills that would allow secrecy among police operating at the state Capitol and state colleges and universities. As open records advocates mark Sunshine Week, Arkansas legislators are looking at a number of bills that would considerably weaken the state's Freedom of Information Act.
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Capitol and its office buildings were briefly locked down Tuesday, the second time in a week amid nervousness over recent shootings. District of Columbia police spokeswoman Alice Kim said officers were alerted to a man with a gun near Fort McNair in Southwest Washington, about a mile and a half south of the Capitol, shortly after 4 p.m. Officers then stopped a person at the intersection of 1st and D Streets, Northwest, which is two blocks from the Capitol and outside the Labor Department, Kim said. The Capitol lockdown began at 4:20 p.m. and the all clear was given over a loudspeaker at 4:45 p.m. Police had sent an email to congressional staff advising them to close and lock doors and stay away from external doors and windows. Both the House and Senate were in session, with House members voting. In the Senate, lawmakers were delivering speeches from the floor.
Capitol Chief of Police Matthew R. Verderosa declined to confirm reports that the suspect was the same man who was arrested last October for disrupting House proceedings, yelling he was a "Prophet of God." That man, 66-year-old Larry Dawson of Tennessee, was issued a "stay away order" by D.C. Superior Court in October, telling him to keep away from the Capitol grounds, court documents show. "We do believe this is an act of a single person who has frequented the Capitol grounds before and there is no reason to believe that this is anything more than a criminal act," Verderosa told reporters. Cathryn Leff of Temecula, California, in town to lobby with the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, said she was going through security at the main entrance to the Capitol Visitors Center when police told people to leave immediately.
The gallery in the Idaho House was restricted to limited seating on the first day of a special session in late August. Lawmakers wanted space to socially distance as they considered issues related to the pandemic and the November election. But maskless protesters shoved their way past Idaho State Police troopers and security guards, broke through a glass door and demanded entry. They were confronted by House Speaker Scott Bedke, a Republican. He decided to let them in and fill the gallery.