Suspect in Census Bureau shooting identified; slain guard was Army veteran

Police identify Census Bureau shooting suspect as 48-year-old D.C. man

The man believed to have shot and killed a guard at the U.S. Census Bureau headquarters before leading police on a wild chase through the nation's capital has been identified as a 48-year-old Washington, D.C., resident, according to police.

Ronald Anderson has been charged with kidnapping and assault on a police officer after he allegedly shot and killed Census Security Officer Lawrence Buckner outside the agency's Maryland headquarters Thursday night, Washington police said.

Washington authorities believe Anderson kidnapped a woman at gunpoint in the northeastern part of the district around 5:30 p.m. local time Thursday, then drove to the Census Bureau's headquarters in Suitland, Md., 30 minutes later, according to a statement by police. 

Buckner, a married father of one, approached Anderson, who opened fire, police say. Buckner died of his injuries at a Maryland hospital hours later.

Washington police say officers spotted Anderson again an hour after the shooting, sparking a wild chase that saw several exchanges of gunfire. He eventually crashed his vehicle and was arrested after a final shootout.

Anderson and a police sergeant were wounded in the shooting, police said. 

The sergeant, who was not identified, is recovering from his injuries and "doing well," according to Lt. Sean Conboy, a police spokesman. Anderson also remains hospitalized, but Conboy could not provide an update on his condition.

It was not clear whether Anderson has been charged in the death of Buckner. Amy Thoreson, a spokeswoman for the FBI in Baltimore, said she couldn't comment on any pending murder charges against Anderson in Buckner's death.

Anderson was arrested on second-degree assault and drug charges in Prince George's County this year, according to Maryland court records. He also pleaded guilty to manslaughter while armed in 1991, according to a report by the Associated Press.

In a statement, Census Bureau Director John H. Thompson said the shooting left hundreds of employees locked in the building or hiding in cars as they waited for police to be sure that the gunman had left the area. 

"The security and safety of our employees is our top priority and we appreciate everyone's cooperation as law enforcement worked to clear the scene to make sure we were safe and free from danger," he said. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and co-workers of Master Security Officer Lawrence Buckner, who was killed in the line of duty protecting us."

Buckner, 59, served eight years in the U.S. Army and had been married for 36 years, according to Master Security, the Maryland-based contractor he was employed by. 

"Lawrence Buckner was a committed family man with a heart of gold. To those that had the privilege of knowing him; Lawrence’s unselfish approach to life caused him to always consider the needs of others, far and above his own," the company said in a statement. "He had a tremendous compassion for others and would help anyone who asked."

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