A Pentagon police officer was killed after being stabbed during an outrage of violence outside the building on Tuesday. Police also shot and killed the suspect.

Pentagon, the U.S. military's headquarters, was temporarily placed on lockdown after a man attacked a police officer on a bus station shortly after 10:30 a.m. Officials said the attack, which included a barrage of gunshots, resulted in "many casualties."

"On behalf of everyone working at the Pentagon, and across the Department of Defense, I extend my deepest sympathies to the family, loved ones and colleagues of the Pentagon Force Protection Officer who died as a result of injuries he received this morning," Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in a statement per The Hill.

Austin said the officer died in the line of duty. He added that the police helped in the daily protection of the tens of thousands of individuals that work in and visit the Pentagon every day.

"This tragic death today is a stark reminder of the dangers they face and the sacrifices they make. We are forever grateful for that service and the courage with which it is rendered," he added.

The Fairfax County Police Department mourned the officer's death, which sent its condolences on Twitter.

Officials who were not allowed to discuss the case and talked to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity first confirmed the officer's and suspect's deaths. Officials believe two innocent witnesses were hurt.

Multiple law enforcement sources identified the suspect as Austin William Lanz, 27, of Georgia.

Two law enforcement officials said in a WSBTV report that Lanz allegedly attacked the officer. The suspect ran at him and stabbed him in the neck.

Investigators were still attempting to figure out why the attack happened. They were looking into Lanz's background, including any possible mental health issues or reasons he would have wanted to target the Pentagon or police officers.

Lanz joined the US Marine Corps in October 2012, but was "administratively separated" less than a month later and never received the rank of Marine, according to the Corps.

Online court records obtained by WSBTV said officials arrested Lanz in April in Cobb County, Georgia, on criminal trespassing and burglary charges. The same day, according to court records, Lanz was charged with six more counts, including two counts of aggravated battery on police, one offense of making a terrorist threat, and one crime of rioting in a prison institution.

In May, a judge reduced his bond to $30,000 and released him on the condition that he not consume illegal narcotics and undergo a mental health evaluation. The charges against him were still ongoing at the time of writing. The Cobb County Sheriff's Office verified that Lanz had previously been held at the agency's detention center, but directed all other inquiries to the FBI's Washington field office.

The attack on a popular stretch of the Washington area's transportation system on Tuesday jangled nerves in a region already on high alert for violence and potential invaders near federal government facilities, especially after the incident at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

This picture taken 26 December 2011 shows the Pentagon building in Washington, DC. The Pentagon, which is the headquarters of the United States Department of Defense (DOD), is the world's largest office building by floor area, with about 6,500,000 sq ft (600,000 m2), of which 3,700,000 sq ft (340,000 m2) are used as offices. Approximately 23,000 military and civilian employees and about 3,000 non-defense support personnel work in the Pentagon. STAFF/AFP via Getty Images

© 2024 Latin Times. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.