On June 14, 2017, Special Agents Crystal Griner and David Bailey were assigned to protect House Majority Whip Steve Scalise. Congressman Scalise was at the Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria, Virginia, practicing for the annual Congressional Baseball Game for Charity with approximately 25 members of the Republican congressional baseball team, which included other members of Congress, staff, and family members.
At 7:06 a.m., a man emerged from the parking lot near the field and walked up to the fence on the third-base line. He carried a 7.62mm SKS assault rifle and a 9mm handgun. Shortly after his arrival, he opened fire on the members, staff, and family members practicing on the field.
The special agents immediately radioed for assistance and engaged the attacker, returning fire with their department-issued 40 caliber handguns to neutralize the threat and prevent the attacker from getting on the field and injuring more people.
During the gun battle, Special Agent Griner was shot in the lower leg with a rifle round, but she continued to return fire as she maintained cover near her assigned vehicle. Special Agent Bailey was injured by shell fragments striking his ankle while he returned fire. The swift and courageous actions by Special Agents Bailey and Griner engaged the shooter and diverted him away from the unarmed group, buying precious time.
By 7:12 a.m., patrol units from the Alexandria Police Department arrived, and three officers joined the gun battle. Officer Kevin Jobe was the first to respond, coming under fire as he exited his vehicle. Without cover, he crossed a large open area to where Special Agent Bailey was positioned. Seconds later, Officers Nicole Battaglia and Alexander Jensen arrived on the scene.
Officer Battaglia jumped out of her vehicle and moved toward the shooter. She immediately came under fire, so she took cover behind a structure. Now focused on Officer Battaglia, the shooter’s attention was diverted away from the other officers and players on the field.
Officer Jensen had taken cover behind his vehicle and proceeded to engage the shooter in an exchange of gunfire. Officer Jensen wounded the shooter in his right hip, causing him to partially collapse and drop his assault rifle, but the shooter then retrieved his 9mm handgun, stood up, and began firing again at Officer Battaglia.
Officer Jobe and Special Agent Bailey moved toward the shooter to divert his attention, and drove him toward home plate. The attacker was then struck in the chest by one of Special Agent Bailey’s rounds. While Special Agent Bailey and Officer Jobe engaged the shooter, Officer Jensen fired and struck the shooter in his left hip, causing him to drop his handgun and collapse to the ground, where he was placed under arrest. Officer Jobe and Special Agent Bailey then began life-saving measures on the attacker, who later succumbed to his wounds at the hospital.
The shooter wounded five people – Congressman Scalise, Special Agents Griner and Bailey, a congressional aide, and a lobbyist – before he was taken down by the special agents and officers on the scene.
The brave and selfless actions of Special Agents Crystal Griner and David Bailey to immediately respond to the shooter’s violent assault and the swift and nimble response by the Alexandria Police Department saved countless lives. Their professionalism under fire is a testament to their dedication to serve and protect members of Congress and the citizens of their country.