Shelter in place lifted at Walter Reed; no indication of active shooter

The Naval Support Activitiy Bethesda houses Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)
The Naval Support Activitiy Bethesda houses Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)

The Naval Support Activitiy Bethesda houses Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The facility was on a lockdown Oct. 20, 2021, for the a bomb threat investigation. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)
The Naval Support Activitiy Bethesda houses Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The facility was on a lockdown Oct. 20, 2021, for the a bomb threat investigation. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)

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The Naval Support Activitiy Bethesda houses Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)
The Naval Support Activitiy Bethesda houses Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The facility was on a lockdown Oct. 20, 2021, for the a bomb threat investigation. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)

The shelter in place order issued for the Bethesda Navy complex that houses Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for the investigation of a bomb threat at the hospital’s lobby has been lifted, authorities said.

Shortly after noon, authorities said a K-9 search of buildings at Walter Reed had expanded to additional hospital buildings, but that the lockdown of the campus remained in place. And by 1:15 p.m., the installation commanding officer lifted the order, and two gates were opened for outbound traffic only.

Around 2:30 p.m., officials said normal weekday gate activities had resumed.

The incident began unfolding earlier Wednesday morning.

The Naval Support Activity Bethesda said on Twitter the base received an anonymous phone call at 8:45 a.m. reporting a bomb at or near the Building 10 on the base, which is the main hospital lobby.

Authorities initially said they were also investigating a possible active shooter threat but shortly after 10 a.m., the base tweeted, “At this time, there is no indication of an active shooter on the installation. A bomb threat is still under investigation. A lockdown remains in place.”

All gates to the facility were closed to the public.

Walter Reed Bethesda tweeted a “hazard exists at” at the hospital. Patients and visitors were asked to stay away and people already on the campus already were told to “go indoors into the nearest building and shelter in place.”

All patient appointments have been canceled, Walter Reed said.

The police response led to heavy traffic on nearby streets, including Wisconsin Avenue.

Jack Moore

Jack Moore joined WTOP.com as a digital writer/editor in July 2016. Previous to his current role, he covered federal government management and technology as the news editor at Nextgov.com, part of Government Executive Media Group.

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