The FBI is searching a home in Stamford, Conn. in connection with the car chase and gunfire incident near the White House and Capitol building Thursday, Stamford’s mayor said.
Law enforcement authorities have identified the suspect as Miriam Carey, 34, of Stamford. The authorities spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to divulge the information publicly.
Stamford police were helping federal authorities as needed, Mayor Michael Pavia told the AP. Police officers cordoned off a condominium building and the surrounding neighborhood in the shoreline city. It was not immediately clear whether the home was Carey’s.
Condo resident Eric Bredow, a banker, said police told him the suspect in the car chase was one of his neighbors.
"I see the door to my building open and the FBI bomb squad in front of it," said Bredow, who added that helicopters were flying overhead when he first went home.
The police chief of Washington, D.C., told reporters earlier Thursday evening that the suspect in the car chase incident, which began outside the White House and ended near the Capitol building, had been killed.
“The suspect in the vehicle was struck by gunfire and at this point has been pronounced [dead],” Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier said at a news conference.
Though police said they would not provide any details about the suspect, who eyewitnesses say was apparently unarmed, Capitol Police Chief Kim Dine confirmed earlier reports that a child was in the car during the chase.
He said the 1 year-old child was safe and has been taken into protective custody.
Lanier said the incident "does not appear to be an accident," citing the "lengthy pursuit" of the suspect.
Peppered with questions about whether the incident Thursday afternoon was linked to terrorism, Capitol Police Chief Kim Dine said there was "no nexus to terrorism," although the investigation is still ongoing.
Two officers were injured during the car chase — a Capitol Police officer and a Secret Service officer — and both are expected to recover, Dine said. The Capitol Police officer, a 23-year veteran of the force, was injured when his car collided with a barrier. He was taken to a hospital, and Dine said he is "doing well."
Police said they are investigating two crime scenes involved in the chase: one on the outside perimeter of the White House and another near the Capitol building.
Officers shot and killed the driver just outside the Hart Senate Office Building, where many senators have their offices. Lanier said no shots were fired at the White House location.
Tourists, congressional staff and some senators watched as a caravan of law enforcement vehicles chased a black Infiniti with Connecticut license plates down Constitution Avenue outside the Capitol, where House and Senate lawmakers were inside debating how to end the ongoing government shutdown.
Matt Chavez, an Idaho resident who said he was near the Capitol to check out shutdown-related protests, told Al Jazeera that the black car was careening toward the Capitol building when police vehicles slammed into the car and boxed it in.
A few senators between the Capitol and their office buildings said they heard the shots.
"We heard three, four, five pops," said Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa. Police ordered Casey and nearby tourists to crouch behind a car for protection, then hustled everyone into the Capitol.
The Capitol building was briefly put on lockdown in accordance with a "shelter in place" order from the Capitol Police.
Just before 3 p.m. EDT the lockdown was lifted, and the House reconvened shortly afterward.
Dine said police officers on the scene had acted "heroically."
“At both the White House and at the Capitol, the security perimeter worked,” added Lanier, who said that police “did exactly what they were supposed to do.”
Police on the plaza around the Capitol said they were working without pay as the result of the shutdown, which has furloughed hundreds of thousands of government workers. A spokesman for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., said a bill to pay them was under consideration.
President Barack Obama has been briefed on the incident, the White House said, adding that it would continue to monitor the situation.
Thursday's car chase was the second major security scare in the U.S. capital in less than three weeks. On Sept. 16 a gunman stormed the nearby Navy Yard and killed 12 people.
Al Jazeera with wire services