April 17, 2021

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Police officer killed in Friday attack on US Capitol grew up in Berkshire County – WCVB Boston

6 min read

U.S. Capitol Police Officer William “Billy” Evans, who was killed Friday, was a native of Berkshire County, Massachusetts.He died in an attack perpetrated by a man who rammed a car into two officers at a barricade outside the U.S. Capitol and then emerged wielding a knife and charged at the officers. Authorities shot the suspect, who died at a hospital.The crash and shooting happened at a security checkpoint near the Capitol typically used by senators and staff on weekdays, though most were away from the building for the current recess. The attack occurred about 100 yards (91 meters) from the entrance of the building on the Senate side of the Capitol. According to childhood friend Jason LaForest, now Vice President of the North Adams City Council, Evans was born in North Adams and his family later moved to Clarksburg. Evans graduated from Drury High School and graduated from Western New England University in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice.”He knew from the time he was in college he wanted to be a Capitol Police officer. He was so proud of his service to the U.S. Capitol and our country, but above everything else he was a dad who loved his kids,” LaForest said. Evans, 41, was an 18-year veteran of the department and a member of the first responders unit. He was also a father of two.”It’s just heartbreaking to know that a great guy and somebody we loved has died as a result of ongoing violence directed at the democratic process in our country,” LaForest said. “It is incredibly sad and just surreal to know that Billy died serving our country, doing something that he loved so much.””Officer Evans is a native of western Massachusetts,” said Rep. Richard Neal, who represents that part of the state. “He is indeed a hometown hero and a patriot who risked and sadly lost his life to protect our country. We are a grateful nation in mourning. This evening, my thoughts are with his family and friends who are grieving his untimely passing.”Evans was the seventh Capitol Police member to die in the line of duty in the department’s history, and the second this year for a department still struggling to heal from the Jan. 6 insurrection. In addition, two officers, one from Capitol Police and another from Washington’s Metropolitan Police Department, died by suicide following the Jan. 6 attack.“I just ask that the public continue to keep U.S. Capitol Police and their families in your prayers,” said Capitol Police Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman. “This has been an extremely difficult time for U.S. Capitol Police after the events of Jan. 6 and now the events that have occurred here today.”LaForest said that Evans was not scheduled to be on-duty on Jan. 6.”He wasn’t present at the Capitol for the beginning of the insurrection but certainly later in the day was part of the efforts, part of the response,” he said. Law enforcement officials identified the suspect in Friday’s attack 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 working to obtain warrants to access his online accounts.Pittman said the suspect did not appear to have been on the police’s radar. But the attack underscored that the building and campus – and the officers charged with protecting them – remain potential targets for violence. President Joe Biden said in a statement that he and his wife were heartbroken to learn of the attack and expressed condolences to Evans’ family. He directed flags at the White House to be lowered to half staff.The Associated Press contributed to this report.

U.S. Capitol Police Officer William “Billy” Evans, who was killed Friday, was a native of Berkshire County, Massachusetts.

He died in an attack perpetrated by a man who rammed a car into two officers at a barricade outside the U.S. Capitol and then emerged wielding a knife and charged at the officers. Authorities shot the suspect, who died at a hospital.

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The crash and shooting happened at a security checkpoint near the Capitol typically used by senators and staff on weekdays, though most were away from the building for the current recess. The attack occurred about 100 yards (91 meters) from the entrance of the building on the Senate side of the Capitol.

According to childhood friend Jason LaForest, now Vice President of the North Adams City Council, Evans was born in North Adams and his family later moved to Clarksburg. Evans graduated from Drury High School and graduated from Western New England University in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice.

“He knew from the time he was in college he wanted to be a Capitol Police officer. He was so proud of his service to the U.S. Capitol and our country, but above everything else he was a dad who loved his kids,” LaForest said.

Evans, 41, was an 18-year veteran of the department and a member of the first responders unit. He was also a father of two.

officer william "billy" evans

U.S. Capitol Police

Officer William “Billy” Evans

“It’s just heartbreaking to know that a great guy and somebody we loved has died as a result of ongoing violence directed at the democratic process in our country,” LaForest said. “It is incredibly sad and just surreal to know that Billy died serving our country, doing something that he loved so much.”

“Officer Evans is a native of western Massachusetts,” said Rep. Richard Neal, who represents that part of the state. “He is indeed a hometown hero and a patriot who risked and sadly lost his life to protect our country. We are a grateful nation in mourning. This evening, my thoughts are with his family and friends who are grieving his untimely passing.”

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Evans was the seventh Capitol Police member to die in the line of duty in the department’s history, and the second this year for a department still struggling to heal from the Jan. 6 insurrection. In addition, two officers, one from Capitol Police and another from Washington’s Metropolitan Police Department, died by suicide following the Jan. 6 attack.

“I just ask that the public continue to keep U.S. Capitol Police and their families in your prayers,” said Capitol Police Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman. “This has been an extremely difficult time for U.S. Capitol Police after the events of Jan. 6 and now the events that have occurred here today.”

LaForest said that Evans was not scheduled to be on-duty on Jan. 6.

“He wasn’t present at the Capitol for the beginning of the insurrection but certainly later in the day was part of the efforts, part of the response,” he said.

Law enforcement officials identified the suspect in Friday’s attack 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 working to obtain warrants to access his online accounts.

Pittman said the suspect did not appear to have been on the police’s radar. But the attack underscored that the building and campus – and the officers charged with protecting them – remain potential targets for violence.

President Joe Biden said in a statement that he and his wife were heartbroken to learn of the attack and expressed condolences to Evans’ family. He directed flags at the White House to be lowered to half staff.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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