Society

This Is The Moment A Gunman Shot At Republicans (Video)

| by Lauren Briggs

The harrowing moment an Illinois man opened fire on June 14 at a Republican congressional baseball practice and shot five people, including the House Majority Whip, Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, was captured on video (below).

In the footage, shot after shot rings out as the man filming takes cover behind a trash can. Legislators and others on the field run for cover, and one man, whose identity is not known, lies still in the middle of the field at Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria, Virginia.

"Do we know where he's at?" the man filming shouts to those near him.

They discuss calling 911 and decide somebody has already done that.

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"Is that guy okay out there?" the man asks. "The guy who's been shot, is he okay?"

Later, people nearby yell to "shoot him" in the head amid return fire. Once emergency responders arrive and neutralize the shooter, several people run over to the man lying in the field and tend to him.

When they arrived, police shot the suspect, 66-year-old James T. Hodgkinson, notes WWJ. He later died from his wounds.

Along with Scalise, former GOP staffer and current lobbyist Matt Mika, two responding police officers, and congressional staffer Zack Barth were shot, as well, notes The Washington Post.

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"The only reason why any of us walked out of this thing, by the grace of God, one of the folks here had a weapon to fire back and give us a moment to find cover," Republican Rep. Mike Bishop of Michigan told WWJ, referring to one of Scalise's security guards. "We were inside the backstop and if we didn't have that cover by a brave person who stood up and took a shot themselves, we would not have gotten out of there and every one of us would have been hit -- every single one of us."

Bishop described those on the field as "sitting ducks" in the shooting that went on for approximately 10 minutes. The suspect fired as many as 100 shots, witnesses said.

The suspect was a staunch supporter of independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, and reportedly targeted the congressmen because of their political affiliation and publicly advocated violence against the GOP in the past, notes The Hill.

"I am sickened by this despicable act," Sanders said in a statement, according to The Hill. "Let me be as clear as I can be. Violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society and I condemn this action in the strongest possible terms. Real change can only come about through nonviolent action, and anything else runs against our most deeply held American values."

Sources: Washington Post, WWJ, The Hill / Photo Credit: Benedict Benedict/Flickr

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