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Shootout at Pentagon

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On alert: Officers secure the Pentagon after a shootout on Thursday.
On alert: Officers secure the Pentagon after a shootout on Thursday.

Narayan Lakshman

Washington DC: In a shootout at the Pentagon, headquarters for the U.S. Department of Defence, on Thursday, two officers were injured and the shooter himself was shot dead.

At approximately 6:40 p.m. local time, a shooter fired at the officers at the entrance to the Pentagon Metro station outside the Pentagon building, according to a statement released by the Defense Department.

The Pentagon Force Protection Agency officers returned fire, injuring the gunman, it said, adding that the officers' injuries did not appear to be life-threatening. “The officers acted very quickly and decisively to neutralise the threat,” a police spokesman said.

The Pentagon was in lockdown for some part of Thursday evening.

According to reports, Chief Richard Keevill at the Pentagon said the shooter, identified as John Patrick Bedell of Hollister, California, spent the last several weeks driving from the West Coast. Police found his car in a local parking garage along with ammunition in his vehicle.

Bedell (36) died on Thursday night from head wounds received in a volley of fire. There has been no official statement on the possible motive for the attack and the shooting is under investigation; however a report by the Associated Press cited Internet postings linked to Bedell pointing to “long-held frustration with the government's reach into the private life of Americans”.


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