WASHINGTON, D.C. – Law enforcement officials identified the suspect who killed a Capitol Police officer as 25-year-old Noah Green. Investigators were digging into his background and examining whether he had any mental health history as they tried to discern a motive. They were also working to obtain warrants to access his online accounts.
On Friday, a Capitol Police officer was killed after investigators said Green rammed a car into two officers at a barricade outside the U.S. Capitol and then emerged wielding a knife.
Video shows the driver of the crashed car emerging with a knife in his hand and starting to run at the pair of officers, Capitol Police Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman told reporters Friday. Authorities shot the suspect, who died at a hospital.
Police identified the slain officer as William “Billy” Evans, an 18-year veteran who was a member of the department’s first responders unit. Authorities said the attack Friday didn’t appear to be related to terrorism. The crash and shooting happened at a security checkpoint near the Capitol as Congress was on recess. It came as the Washington region remained on edge nearly three months after a mob of insurrectionists stormed the Capitol.
Pittman said the suspect did not appear to have been on the police’s radar. Green described himself as a follower of the Nation of Islam and its founder, Louis Farrakhan, and spoke of going through a difficult time where he leaned on his faith, according to recent messages posted online that have since been taken down. The messages were captured by the group SITE, which tracks online activity.
“To be honest these past few years have been tough, and these past few months have been tougher,” he wrote. “I have been tried with some of the biggest, unimaginable tests in my life. I am currently now unemployed after I left my job partly due to afflictions, but ultimately, in search of a spiritual journey.”
Multiple news outlets reported that Green was born in Fairlea, West Virginia and that Green graduated from Christopher Newport University in Newport News, Va., where he played football with the school. The university confirmed that he graduated with a degree in finance in 2019. The spokesman from the university also said Green played on CNU’s football team in the fall 2017 and fall 2018 seasons.
According to Green’s profile page on CNU Athletics’ site, he was a defensive back from Covington, Va., where he attended Alleghany High School. On his personal profile page, he said that the person in history he’d most like to meet was Malcolm X.
The Washington Post reported Friday evening that it had interviewed Green’s brother, Brendan Green, who said Noah had lived previously in Indianapolis but then had moved to Africa. His brother told the newspaper that Noah had recently moved in with him in his Virginia apartment.
The New York Times reported that in December of 2020, Green petitioned to change his name to Noah Zaeem Muhammad but did not appear at his hearing in Indianapolis last Tuesday.
Facebook has removed Green’s account as well as his Instagram account. Facebook confirmed to The Hill that, along with scrapping the accounts of the 25-year-old suspect in Friday’s attack, they will also be scrubbing any content from him that violates its policies.
“After this horrific event, our thoughts are with the Capitol Police and their loved ones. We have designated the incident under our Dangerous Individuals and Organizations policy, which means we have removed the suspect’s accounts from Facebook and Instagram, and are removing any content that praises, supports, or represents the attack or the suspect. We are in contact with law enforcement as they conduct their investigation,” a spokesperson said.
Two law enforcement officials told The Associated Press that investigators initially believed the suspect stabbed one of the officers, but it was later unclear whether the knife actually made contact, in part because the vehicle struck the officers with such force. The officials were not authorized to publicly discuss the investigation and spoke on condition of anonymity.