LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- After a congressman and four others were shot while participating in a charity baseball game in Virginia, lawmakers are praising the actions of two Capitol Police Officers who are credited with stopping the gunman.
Lt. Gary Burman with LMPD tells us, “You're always playing catch up because the bad guy knows what he's going to do and by the time you figure out what he's doing, you're behind.”
The FBI says James Hodgkinson came to the field Wednesday morning and started shooting. Lt. Burman said this a situation that his officers must think about in patrolling and protecting the Derby City as he states, “There is nothing really informal anymore, not in these years. We operate under the assumption that anything could happen at any time at any place and we are vigilant with that fact.”
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul is among the lawmakers present during the shooting. Burman adds, “I thought about some of the details we've worked in the past, we work Senator Paul quite often when he's in Louisville. Actually, I got a call from his staff letting me know what was going on.”
All lawmakers are not offered protection. Louisiana Congressman Steve Scalise had two Capitol police officers with him, they are separate from secret service agents but he receives protection because he's the Majority Whip.
Burman details, “You have 535 members of Congress and you have only 10 that have protection, five in the House and five in the Senate. Senator McConnell is a majority leader so he has protection with the Capitol Police which we work quite often.”
Senator Rand Paul tells ABC News, “It’s sad that he was shot, but he saved everybody’s life by being there and having the two security details.”
Greg Gitschier, a Louisville native, and former Secret Service Agent describes, “Once they laid down suppressing fire towards the attacker, that saved a lot of lives in my opinion. Because these people are standing on a baseball field so they're easy targets or in a dugout.”
Gitschier has 33 years in law enforcement and calls the acts of those two officers who were shot while taking down the suspect, courageous, as he tells us, “The fact that they were wounded and still responded just accolades to them. I mean that's what we are trained to do. You know, just because you get shot, doesn't mean you go down and call for an ambulance. You still have to fight.”
It's a job done by officers across the nation and in Kentuckiana. Our officers say they continue to be prepared for the unthinkable.
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