But their quick action and heroics prevented a shooting rampage from becoming what “very well could have been a large-scale massacre,” Rep. Mo Brooks said.
The attack proved how vital — and encompassing — the Capitol Police can be. Here’s what we know about the often obscure police force:
Who are the US Capitol Police, and what do they do?
More than 2,100 officers and civilians work for the Capitol Police. They’re tasked with protecting the members, employees, visitors and facilities of Congress, according to their website.
The USCP also collaborates with other federal agencies and local law enforcement “to increase the collection and sharing of intelligence information,” according to the Capitol Police strategic plan.
How big is their jurisdiction?
The Capitol Police jurisdiction is in the District of Columbia. But if members of Congress need additional security while in their home districts (or elsewhere), Capitol Police can coordinate with local police departments to provide that security.
Who were the Capitol Police officers in Wednesday’s attack?
Special agents Crystal Griner and David Bailey are being hailed as heroes for taking down the gunman who shot House Majority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana and several others at a baseball practice.
Griner and Bailey are both members of Scalise’s security detail.
Brooks, who was on the field when gunfire rang out, said he was amazed by the bravery of Capitol Police.
“The Capitol security guy, who had already been shot, who helped take down the shooter, came limping toward us in the outfield, totally ignoring his own wounds, to check on the person he was primarily responsible for, Steve Scalise,” said Brooks, an Alabama Republican.
“We insisted that he (the officer) go back and get attended to because he was bleeding, but he was doing his job. Those two security details, those two Capitol police officers, they showed incredible bravery — pistols against a rifle — from a 90- to 120-feet distance. As you know, that kind of distance heavily favors the rifle.”
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