Army: Enraged Soldier Shot Herself at Va. Base

Fort Lee was locked down during incident

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Aug 26, 2014 1:48 AM CDT | Updated Aug 26, 2014 3:03 AM CDT

(Newser) – An enraged soldier barricaded herself in a building at Virginia's Fort Lee Army base yesterday, threw objects around the office, and then fatally shot herself in the head as law enforcement officials tried to negotiate with her, authorities say. The heavily trafficked base went on lockdown while the soldier was barricaded on the third floor of the four-story building that houses the Army's Combined Arms Support Command. The Army says an alert was sounded across the post and those in the building either took shelter inside or evacuated as directed.

"This situation could've been worse," says a general at the base. The soldier was a sergeant first class who had been in the Army for 14 years and at Fort Lee for three, and her gun was not a service weapon, he adds. "We are sad for our soldier in arms that she faced those kinds of challenges [and] had to resort to those kinds of actions," he says. Officials did not know whether she was being treated for any mental health issues and could not speculate whether drugs or alcohol might have been a factor.

Security guards open a gate for motorist at the visitor entrance to Fort Lee yesterday.
Security guards open a gate for motorist at the visitor entrance to Fort Lee yesterday.   (Steve Helber)
Army Maj. Gen. Stephen Lyons speaks during a news conference at the base in Fort Lee yesterday.
Army Maj. Gen. Stephen Lyons speaks during a news conference at the base in Fort Lee yesterday.   (Steve Helber)
Army Maj. Gen. Stephen Lyons speaks during a news conference at Fort Lee yesterday.
Army Maj. Gen. Stephen Lyons speaks during a news conference at Fort Lee yesterday.   (Steve Helber)
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