Wild fox captured and euthanized after Capitol Hill attacks

A fox wandering Capitol Hill was captured Wednesday morning and has been euthanized after biting at least 9 people including a congressman, according to Washington health officials.

The DC Public Health Lab claims the fox tested positive for the rabies virus and advises anyone who has come in contact with the animal to reach out to authorities.

California Rep. Ami Bera reported being bitten by the fox on Capitol Hill on Monday, but returned to work on Wednesday after treatment. Similarly, Ximena Bustillo, an agricultural policy reporter for Politico, was bitten by the fox in broad daylight on Tuesday.

DC health officials have yet to take additional measures for the rest of the local fox population, including the offspring, or kits, who were found on Capitol grounds yesterday.

The fox’s presence on the hill this week has caused a stir among lawmakers and journalists, with her euthanization upsetting a number of people. The animal seems to have become a mascot during her time in the city as photos and videos of her mischief flooded social media. 

The Capitol Police, however, are adamant that everyone steer clear of wild foxes, no matter how endearing they appear.

Sophia Lama is a senior at Florida International University majoring in broadcast journalism. She was ABC 7 Chicago’s first-ever race and culture reporting intern. Currently, Sophia is a part of the NBCU Diversity, Equity & Inclusion fellowship in Washington, DC and is interning for ESPN.

Taylor Gutierrez is a Cuban-American digital journalism student and intends to pursue a career as a multimedia journalist, combining her passions for writing and photography. Gutierrez currently works as a Communications Associate for FIU's Institute of Environment where she discusses issues within the field of environmental science. She hopes her writing will help bridge the gap in communication between media consumers and the scientific research community.