WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Police briefly shut down two Washington, DC streets and an entrance to the United States Congress visitor’s center on Tuesday while they investigated two suspicious packages left near the U.S. Capitol and determined they were not a threat.
The incident came one day after the area around the Capitol was put on lockdown because of a suspected shooter.
U.S. Capitol Police gave the all-clear less than an hour after the initial report of unattended packages, which fed into heightened security concerns in the nation’s capital after the Brussels bombing last week that killed 35 people.
The unattended packages were found outside the Capitol Visitor Center and near the U.S. Library of Congress across the street, Capitol Police said in a statement.
During the brief investigation one entrance to the visitor center was closed, but the other entrance, as well as the Capitol building and surrounding congressional offices, remained open, the statement said.
A Reuters witness initially reported police activity in the area stretching from the Supreme Court to the Library of Congress. A bomb squad was also on the scene.
On Monday a man was shot and wounded by police after pointing what appeared to be a weapon at officers in the underground visitor center.
(This version of the story was refiled to correct day of the week to Tuesday in first paragraph)
Reporting by Gary Cameron and Megan Cassella; Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Doina Chiacu and Fiona Ortiz