Capitol Hill Washington DC Congress America
Capitol Hill Washington DC Congress America Thinkstock

A shooting on Monday afternoon caused US Capitol Police to place the Capitol complex and the White House on total lockdown.

Gunshots were reported at the US Capitol visitors center and workers in the Capitol were told to "shelter in place," according to Senate sources quoted by Reuters.

The gunman was captured, but not before managing to shoot a police officer according to the Senate Sergeant At Arms. Fortunately the officer did not suffer serious wounds according to the statement.

However, according to two federal officers cited by NBC News it was not the police officer but rather the gunman who was shot by officers after pointing a gun at them. CNN likewise reported that the gunman was shot instead of the officer, adding that a female civilian bystander was wounded by shrapnel.

The gunman set off a metal detector at the visitor and then pulled out the gun, according to sources who spoke with the news site.

Police sources were cited by MSNBC as saying the site went into emergency mode, as no one was allowed in or out of the complex, and anyone outside was advised to seek cover immediately. Police now say there is no active threat.

Congress is currently on recess for the Easter holiday, but some members of Congress and their staff were on site. However many tourists were visiting the famous governmental buildings.

This is not the first time the Capitol building has been targeted. Last May during Memorial Day weekend a bomb squad detonated a pressure cooker found in a car parked nearby.

The pressure cooker raised great concerns since the appliance has been used in numerous terrorist attacks in the past as an explosive filled with nails and other shrapnel to inflict gruesome casualties.

The most notable usage as a means of attack was seen in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, in which an attack with two pressure cookers murdered three and wounded over 260 others.

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