WASHINGTON (AP) -- Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., was shot in the head and an aide killed Saturday when an assailant opened fire in an area where the lawmaker was meeting with constituents in Tucson, congressional officials said.
The officials said one of the victims died soon after the attack, and others were taken to a nearby hospital. A hospital spokeswoman said Giffords is alive and in critical condition after the shooting.
One official added the attack was carried out with an automatic weapon.
The officials who described the events did so on condition of anonymity, saying they were not permitted to comment publicly.
They said the FBI and local law enforcement were investigating the attack, which took place while Giffords was greeting constituents outside a grocery store.
Giffords, 40, was re-elected to her third term last November. She was a member of the Arizona House and Senate before coming to Washington.
She first won election to Congress amid a wave of Democratic victories in 2006. In November, she edged a tea party favorite.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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