Who was Austin William Lanz? Pentagon officer killed by man accused of attacking Georgia cop

Lanz was earlier arrested in April 2021, in Cobb County, Georgia, on criminal trespassing and burglary charges


                            Who was Austin William Lanz? Pentagon officer killed by man accused of attacking Georgia cop
Emergency first responders investigate the scene of a shooting with multiple victims at a mass transit station outside the Pentagon on August 3, 2021, in Arlington, Virginia (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC: A Pentagon officer was stabbed to death during a "burst of violence" in the area of the Metro bus platform that is part of the Pentagon Transit Center, reports reveal.

In addition, at least one suspect in the incident died at the scene, who was identified by multiple law enforcement officials as Austin William Lanz, 27, of Georgia. The officer has not yet been identified. The Pentagon, the headquarters of the U.S. military, was briefly under lockdown after Lanz attacked the officer on a bus platform shortly after 10:30 a.m. The violence, included a round of gunshots, followed by “several casualties,” said Woodrow Kusse, the chief of the Pentagon Force Protection Agency, which is responsible for security in the facility.

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The officer was ambushed by Lanz, who ran at him and stabbed him in the neck, according to two of the law enforcement officials. Responding officers then shot and killed Lanz. Investigators are still trying to discover the motive behind the attack and are were digging into Lanz's background, including any possible records of mental illness or any reason he might want to target the Pentagon or police officers. Then, it was found out that Lanz had enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in October 2012 but was "administratively separated" less than a month later and never earned the title Marine, the Corps said in a statement.

Public safety blogger Dave Statter, who has a video of the scene said, "I can see all the Pentagon Force Protection Agency Police converging on the transit center. And I look closer and there’s a person down on the ground, blood all around them in front of a bus. Eventually, I see there’s a second person to the right." During a mid-afternoon press conference, officials stated that the incident had been resolved and there was no further threat. "We are not actively looking for another suspect," said Pentagon Police Chief Woodrow Kusse. "We believe, my agency, my department believes that this reservation and community and the people we serve are safe and secure right now." Kusse also said it is premature to say if this was a terrorist attack and the motive remains unclear.

A spokesman for Arlington Fire said that they weren’t dispatched until 13 minutes after the attack which happened at around 10:50. He said fire crews came six minutes later.
This is what went out over police radio at 10:50: "Just FYI, we are getting requests from Pentagon for an active shooter on their platform." "I would think something like this that you would get fire and EMS going right away even if they have to stage for safety at a distance," said Statter. "But you dispatch them right away."

It was found out that Lanz was arrested in April 2021, in Cobb County, Georgia, on criminal trespassing and burglary charges. The records also reveal a separate criminal case that was filed against Lanz on the same day as his arrest with six additional charges, including two counts of aggravated battery on police, a count of making a terrorist threat, and a charge for rioting in a penal institution. At that time, Lanz's bond was reduced by a judge and he was released under the conditions that he refrains from illegal drugs and gets a mental health evaluation, the records reportedly reveal.

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