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False alarm at Walter Reed Medical Center

Posted at 3:00 PM, Nov 27, 2018

What was thought to be an active shooter at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center was actually a false alarm, according to the Naval Support Activity in Bethesda.

The United States Navy released the following statement on what transpired:

The active shooter event aboard Naval Support Activity Bethesda today was the result of the improper use of mass notification system by a tenant command aboard the installation. While preparing for an upcoming drill, the notification system was inadvertently enacted without containing the words "EXERCISE" or "DRILL". Individuals who saw the mass notification statement immediately notified NSA Bethesda security, where they responded accordingly and instituted an installation-wide active shooter response. On further investigation, they determined that the improper use of the system was the root cause and secured from the active shooter response.

Montgomery County Police said they were responding after Walter Reed security personnel initially reached out to them about a possible active shooter on the grounds. 

Officials tweeted out that they were searching the premises before they knew it was a drill.

Maryland Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger originally sent out a tweet announcing there was an active shooter on the grounds, concerning many on social media. 

Ruppersberger followed up with another tweet saying he does not believe this was a drill.