Shots were reported at the FBI’s Cincinnati office on Thursday when an armed person wearing body armor attempted to breach the building and encountered agents.
The suspect reportedly fired a nail gun into the FBI Cincinnati building and fled, leading to a police pursuit, according to NBC News.
“At approximately 9 AM this morning an armed subject attempted to breach the Visitor Screening Facility at FBI Cincinnati. After an alarm and a response by FBI special agents, the subject fled north onto Interstate 71,” FBI Cincinnati tweeted Thursday afternoon.
— FBI Cincinnati (@FBI Cincinnati)
Authorities said the FBI, Ohio State Highway Patrol, and local law enforcement responded to this “critical incident.”
The Clinton County Emergency Management Agency said a lockdown is in effect within a one-mile radius of Smith Road and Center Road, where the incident took place. “Law enforcement has traded shots with a male suspect who is wearing a gray shirt and body armor,” the agency said. Parts of the interstate were shut down, officials said.
FBI Cincinnati has released a statement regarding the incident.
“On August 11, 2022, at approximately 9:15 EST, the FBI Cincinnati Field Office had an armed subject attempt to breach the Visitor Screening Facility (VSF). Upon the activation of an alarm and a response by armed FBI special agents, the subject fled northbound onto Interstate 71. The FBI, Ohio State Highway Patrol, and local law enforcement partners are on scene near Wilmington, Ohio, trying to resolve this critical incident.”
At around 12:30 p.m. the FBI said the suspect was “contained” but not in custody, according to NBC News.
The incident comes after FBI Director Christopher Wray condemned “deplorable and dangerous” threats against law enforcement that have been made in the wake of the FBI raid on former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida.
Authorities monitoring social media posts have reported a significant increase in death threats aimed toward FBI agents, Wray, and U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland
“I’m always concerned about threats to law enforcement,” Wray told reporters Wednesday in Omaha, Nebraska. “Violence against law enforcement is not the answer, no matter who you’re upset with.”
FBI agents raided Mar-a-Lago Monday, reportedly in search of “presidential records and evidence of classified information being stored there” in potential violation of federal law.
The unprecedented raid of a former president’s private residence drew outrage from Trump, who accused President Joe Biden of weaponizing the justice system to go after his political opponent. Many Republicans and Trump supporters shared the president’s anger and have demanded an explanation from the Justice Department.