Security guard shot at conservative group's DC office
Prayers for the man shot just for doing his job.A gunman who shot a security guard Wednesday at the Family Research Council office in Washington, D.C., was carrying a handgun and several additional rounds of ammunition, federal investigators told NBC News.
Washington, D.C., police say the man, in his late 20s, walked into the headquarters of the conservative Christian lobbying group around 10:45 a.m. When challenged by the security guard, the gunman shot the guard in the arm.
He was then detained by other guards, and both district police and the FBI responded. He was taken into custody by FBI agents. The FBI will have jurisdiction if the incident turns out to be a hate crime.
One law enforcement official told NBC News it's fairly clear the Family Research Council was the man's target, though the FBI has yet to specify either a motive or the target of the attack.
The suspect's name has not been released, but officials said he is from nearby Herndon, Va., and was born in 1984. A photographer who saw the suspect being arrested describes him as a 6-foot-3, 250-pound black male.
The FBI said the security guard is being treated in the hospital and "doing OK."
Federal officials said the suspect was carrying a backpack containing materials related to Chick-fil-A restaurants.
Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council sent an e-mail to members last month in support of comments by the restaurant chain's president, Dan Cathy, who criticized same-sex marriage.
The comments touched off a public clash. Supporters on "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day" on Aug. 1 flooded the chain's franchises around the country and was countered with "kiss-ins" by same-sex couples at assorted locations Aug. 3.
Two federal officials said the suspect appeared to be mentally disturbed.
In a statement, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins said, "The police are investigating this incident. Our first concern is with our colleague who was shot today. Our concern is for him and his family."
On its website, FRC, founded in 1983, says it advocates "faith, family and freedom in public policy and public opinion."