Washington D.C. police are now negotiating with a man inside a vehicle near the US Capitol building in response to a claim that there was an explosive device in his truck, according to law enforcement sources.
Several buildings in the Capitol area, including the Capitol building itself, the Library of Congress, the Supreme Court and office buildings, are now being evacuated.
The Capitol police are also investigating the incident. Some of the Washington, D.C. police are now wearing gas masks.
Staffers in the office buildings just received alerts on their phones that they were to evacuate their offices immediately.
The US Capitol Police posted a message on Twitter on Thursday morning saying that they are responding to a “suspicious vehicle” that was reported to be near the Library of Congress.
“This is an active bomb threat investigation,” the USCP stated on Twitter.
The Associated Press is reporting that law enforcement officials said investigators were working to determine whether the device was an operable explosive and whether or not the man in the truck, which they state is a pickup truck, was holding a detonator.
The officials were not authorized to discuss the matter with the press and they spoke on condition of anonymity.
The following streets in the area have been closed, according to the FoxNews affiliate Fox5:
– Independence Ave between 3rd St. SW to 2nd St SE
– Constitution Ave between 3rd St. NW and 2nd St. NE
– East Capitol NE between 1st St NE and 2nd St SE
Office workers located in the Cannon and Jefferson buildings on Thursday were alerted by email to remain calm and move from the buildings. Those who work in the Jefferson building were told by the authorities to not use the exits on the west side of the building.
Those who work in the Cannon building were advised to go to the Longworth building, according to CNBC.
Since the Senate and House are not in session at present, most lawmakers are not in their offices this week.
The FBI Washington Field Office’s National Capital Response are also on the scene, as are agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
CNBC says that the White House is currently monitoring the situation, and receiving updates from law enforcement.
At 12: 30 PM Capitol police held a press conference in which they said that the man, who had parked his black pickup near the Capitol, had immediately threatened that he had an explosive device when the Capitol police approached him.
They do know his name and are working on investigating his past at the present time. The negotiations are ongoing at the present time.
This is a developing story.
MEDIA ALERT: This is an active bomb threat investigation. The staging area for journalists covering this situation is at Constitution and First Street, NW for your safety.
Please continue to avoid the area around the Library of Congress. pic.twitter.com/jTNVaBmVwR
— U.S. Capitol Police (@CapitolPolice) August 19, 2021