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Shootings at U.S. Holocaust Museum, 1 dead (updated)

June 10, 2009 | 11:43 am

One week after President Obama was at Buchenwald Concentration Camp in Germany denouncing intolerance, a gunman walked into the U.S. Holocaust Museum in Washington with a long gun and opened fire, according to witnesses.

Sgt. David Schlosser, a public information officer of the U.S. Park Police, said the suspect exchanged fire with one security guard and two other guards returned fire against the gunman.

(UPDATE: The suspect and one of the security guards have died. And President Obama issued a statement published in its entirety below.))

The Los Angeles Times is covering the unfolding story -- check updates here.

I just wanted to add this piece of information.

A friend of mine volunteers at the museum on Wednesdays. I called her just after I heard the news to find out how a gunman could penetrate the building, which requires all visitors to go through a metal detector.

I reached my friend on her cellphone as she and other staffers were heading toward the subway. Although she did not want her name to be used, she said me the gunman came into the building firing, even before he got to the metal detectors.

-- Johanna Neuman

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Statement by President Obama on today's shooting

“I am shocked and saddened by today’s shooting at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. This outrageous act reminds us that we must remain vigilant against anti-Semitism and prejudice in all its forms. No American institution is more important to this effort than the Holocaust Museum, and no act of violence will diminish our determination to honor those who were lost by building a more peaceful and tolerant world.

“Today, we have lost a courageous security guard who stood watch at this place of solemn remembrance. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends in this painful time.”