Miriam Carey killed in Capitol Hill car chase

10:29 PM, Oct 3, 2013   |    comments
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WASHINGTON -- (WUSA9/USA Today/AP) -- A woman tried to drive through the barricade near the White House and the Capitol, before she was shot and killed by law enforcement, police said.  A child was in the car when the woman tried to ram into a gate of the White House.

The chaotic events began at 2:12 p.m. when the driver rammed a temporary barrier at 15th and E Streets NW, hitting a Secret Service officer, said Secret Service chief Ed Donovan. Other Secret Service officers chased the woman east on Pennsylvania Avenue but did not shoot.

Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier said Capitol Police officers pursued the speeding car eastbound and tried to stop it in Garfield Circle, just west of the Capitol lawn. A 23-year-veteran officer suffered non-life-threatening injuries when he crashed into a barrier.

Police had the woman's car surrounded but she escaped, ramming a Secret Service vehicle as she fled. Lanier said police then fired their first shots at the suspect.

The driver made her way onto Constitution Avenue before eventually stopping in the 100 blocks of Maryland Avenue NE, near the Hart Senate Office Building.  Police killed the driver after she got out of her vehicle and tried to flee.

Ten gun shots were reported near the U.S. Capitol building.

Larry Murr, a former Louisville resident living in Jacksonville, Fla., was visiting the Capitol building when he heard the gunfire, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported.

"We were standing there, looking at the building, and all of a sudden we heard a pop-pop-pop-pop," he said, saying he thought he heard four to five shots fired in rapid succession.

Two federal officials told USA TODAY that all shots were fired by law enforcement officers. One official said no gun was recovered from the Infiniti.

Terrance Gainer, the Sergeant at Arms of the U.S. Senate, said the woman's vehicle could not have reached the Capitol itself because "there are barricades up all the time."

As the chase unfolded, members of Congress and staff were told by Capitol police to "immediately shelter in place." Less than an hour later, a TV screen in the Senate press gallery flashed an "all clear" message.

Security was heightened at the White House as a precaution and President Obama was briefed on the incident, according to White House officials.

The Nissan Infiniti was registered to Miriam Carey, 34, of Stamford, Conn., according to a federal law enforcement official.  Officials say Carey was killed. Her child was taken to Children's Hospital. We are told the 1-year-old child was not seriously injured. She has been taken into protective custody.

VIDEO: Carey's apartment searched http://newyork.cbslocal.com/video?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=9377763

A 23-year veteran of the Capitol Police and a Secret Service Officer were injured, according to the Capitol Police chief. The Capitol Police officer has since been released from the Hospital after being treated, officials said. 

"This does not appear to be in any way an accident," Lanier said, noting that the woman twice tried to breach security barriers and struck a uniformed Secret Service officer near the White House.

U.S. Capitol Police chief Kim Dine said the incident "appears to be an isolated, singular matter, with, at this point, no nexus to terrorism."

Carey's mother, Idella Carey, told ABC News that her daughter started suffering from post-partum depression after giving birth to her daughter, Erica, last August. 

"She was depressed. ... She was hospitalized," said Idella Carey. 

Idella Carey said Miriam Carey had "no history of violence" and she didn't know why she was in D.C. She said she thought Carey was taking Erica to a doctor's appointment in Connecticut.

ABC News reported that Miriam Carey was a dental hygienist. Her boss, Dr. Steven Oken, described Carey as a person who was "always happy."

"I would never in a million years believe that she would do something like this," he said. "It's the furthest thing from anything I would think she would do, especially with her child in the car. I am floored that it would be her."

The Associated Press reported that a former employer, periodontist Brian Evans of Hamden, Conn., said she was fired from her job about a year ago. He said Carey leftafter she was hospitalized for a head injury she suffered in a fall down a staircase. Evans said there was nothing unusual about her exit, but didn't go into detail.

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