Monday, May 27, 2024
HomenewsTexas congressman carjacked at gunpoint

Texas congressman carjacked at gunpoint

Democratic Representative Henry Cuellar of Texas has been carjacked just outside of his residence in Washington, D.C.

Cuellar, a centrist who represents Texas, had his vehicle taken at gunpoint in D.C.’s Navy Yard neighborhood on Monday night. The carjacking was first reported by Politico, with Cuellar’s office confirming the incident to Newsweek a short time later.

“As Congressman Cuellar was parking his car this evening, 3 armed assailants approached the Congressman and stole his vehicle,” Cuellar’s Chief of Staff Jacob Hochberg said in a text. “Luckily, he was not harmed and is working with local law enforcement.”

“Thank you to Metro PD and Capitol Police for their swift action and for recovering the Congressman’s vehicle,” Hochberg added.

Members of Congress were sent an alert that informed them of the carjacking shortly after it happened, according to a post on X, formerly Twitter, from Axios reporter Andrew Solender.

“Rep. Henry Cuellar was carjacked right outside a dorm building in which dozens [of] House members live, per an alert sent to the members,” Solender wrote. “3-4 men held guns to his head, they took his phone and his car as he was parked on the street, the alert says.”

Without mentioning Cuellar but in response to a request for comment on his carjacking, Washington, D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department said in a statement to Newsweek that there “was a report of an armed carjacking that came in at approximately 9:32 pm at the intersection of New Jersey and K Street, Southeast.”

In an email to Newsweek, the U.S. Capitol Police said that it was investigating the incident alongside the Metropolitan Police Department, adding that “detectives are working to track down the suspects.”

Republican Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia commented on the carjacking almost immediately after news of the incident emerged, expressing concern for Cuellar while also taking the opportunity to launch an attack on Democrats.

“Democrat Congressman Henry Cuellar was just car jacked at gun point in Navy Yard which is just a few miles from the Capitol,” Greene wrote on X. “I hope he’s ok. They should be prosecuting real criminals instead of persecuting their political enemies.”

GOP Senator Mike Lee also weighed in on the carjacking on X, while using the incident to make a point about crime in Washington.

“My friend, @RepCuellar (D. TX), became the victim of a crime tonight in what’s considered a nice part of D.C. D.C. is dangerous,” Lee wrote. “Something’s gone terribly wrong here—for far too long. Congress has the sole power to make D.C.’s laws, and must intervene.”

Monday’s incident was not the only carjacking of a sitting member of Congress in recent memory. In December 2021, the vehicle of Democratic Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon of Pennsylvania was stolen at gunpoint in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, later being recovered in Delaware as five suspects were arrested.

Update: 10/03/23, 12:15 a.m.: This article was updated with more information, comment from the U.S. Capitol Police and additional context.

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