hillside

High-ranking Capitol Police official admits he circumvented protocol to fire female officer
Third day of sexual discrimination trial reveals Sourgoutsis’ direct supervisors were not included in firing process

A former Capitol Police officer has alleged she was fired from the force because of her gender. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The male Capitol Police official who recommended the firing of a female officer testified Thursday that he arrived at that decision without ever meeting with her or consulting her direct supervisor.

It was the only termination endorsement Eric C. Waldow made while he was in the role of inspector, he said in D.C. district court on the third day of  the sexual discrimination case brought by the female officer, Chrisavgi Sourgoutsis.

Capitol Christmas tree almost ready to get lit!
60-foot blue spruce from New Mexico is scheduled to arrive at the Capitol on Nov. 25

The U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is displayed on the West Front of the Capitol last holiday season. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The U.S. Capitol Christmas tree is ready to make its 1,800-mile journey to Capitol Hill, following a rigorous “Bachelor”-like selection process, complete with its own cutting ceremony.

This year’s tree, a 60-foot tall, 21-foot wide blue spruce, comes from northern New Mexico’s Carson National Forest and will soon sit on the Capitol’s West Lawn. This is the third time the state has provided a tree.

Former Capitol Police chief acknowledges ‘systemic failure’ in supervising new officers
Matthew Verderosa testifies in sex discrimination lawsuit against department

Former Capitol Police Chief Matthew Verderosa acknowledged a “systemic failure” when he was an assistant chief at the agency. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Former Capitol Police Chief Matthew R. Verderosa acknowledged Tuesday there was a “systemic failure” at the department to properly supervise officers on probationary status before he took the top job in 2016. 

Speaking at the sex discrimination trial brought by former Capitol Police officer Chrisavgi Sourgoutsis, who alleges she was wrongfully terminated in 2015 because of her gender, Verderosa said he was concerned she “wasn’t properly evaluated from a performance standard.”

Campus Notebook: Capitol Police sexual discrimination trial set for Monday
Senate Indian Affairs Committee staffer paid to work Washington Redskins training camp

Capitol Police Chief Steven A. Sund. The agency he leads is fighting a sexual discrimination lawsuit. The trial is set to start Monday. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Are you ready for some football? How about a sexual discrimination case? Whatever it is, Campus Notebook is here for you. 

A sexual discrimination case against the Capitol Police could provide a rare glimpse into the inner workings of the secretive agency and the way women are treated in the male-dominated police force.

Photos of the Week: Halloween and impeachment collide
The week of Nov. 1 as captured by Roll Call’s photojournalists

Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., walks by a protester outside the Capitol after the House voted on its resolution outlining the next steps in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Photos: DC High Heel Race all about impeachment and Trump
Scenes from the 33rd annual race down 17th Street

Only in D.C. will you find people dressing up for Halloween as former Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and a whistleblower. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

Mexican ‘Day of the Dead’ tradition very much alive on Capitol Hill
Offices display lively altars with vibrant colors and food for dead relatives

A Día de los Muertos altar is on display in the office of Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva on Capitol Hill on Monday. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

Marilyn Zepeda may have left Mexico, but she made sure to bring along a piece of its culture to the United States: vibrant “papel picado,” loaves of “Pan de Muerto” and photos of the dead.

The legislative correspondent for Arizona Democratic Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva, who is himself the son of a Mexican immigrant, Zepeda has been in Washington, D.C., just over a year, and she’s already raising spirits around the office. After all, it’s almost the Day of the Dead, or “Día de Los Muertos.”

How you (and your pet!) can be buried at the Congressional Cemetery
Dog-walking, movie nights and pet burials at the historic boneyard

A woman wanders the grounds of the Congressional Cemetery along with two canine companions. (Thomas McKinless/CQ Roll Call)

Despite its namesake, the Congressional Cemetery has about 5,000 plots available, and no, you don’t have to be a member of Congress to be buried in one. “The only requirement for being buried here is you have to be dead,” says Paul Williams, president of Historic Congressional Cemetery.

But the cemetery, situated in Southeast D.C., is not just a burial ground. It also serves as “a Central Park for this part of Capitol Hill,” according to Williams. It hosts parties, yoga, movie nights and has a dog-walking program. And you don’t have to be dead to partake in those.

Campus notebook: Digitizing Congress, a flu shot shortage and spotting an owl
Plus fall treats and process for reviewing franked mail is entering the 21st century

An owl peered into Sen. Jeanne Shaheen’s office in the Hart Building on Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

There was good news this week for serious Congress nerds everywhere, especially those without access to a massive academic library.

The Government Publishing Office and the Law Library of Congress announced a plan Tuesday to digitize the entirety of the Congressional serial set — bound volumes of legislative reports and related documents dating all the way back to 1817.

That time Justin Verlander and Kate Upton visited the Capitol and Uncle Fred
Before he was a World Series foe, he was a tourist

From left, Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., his niece, model Kate Upton, and her then-fiance Justin Verlander, a pitcher for the Detroit Tigers at the time, pose for a picture on the House steps on May 10, 2016. Verlander was in town for a series between the Tigers and the Washington Nationals. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Washington Nationals fans will root for their team tonight as it takes on the Houston Astros and one of their ace pitchers, Justin Verlander, in Game 2 of the World Series. Was it really three-plus years ago that Verlander, then hurling for the Detroit Tigers, visited the Capitol with his then-fiancee, supermodel Kate Upton, for a tour with Uncle Fred, R-Mich.? (That being Rep. Fred Upton.)

Indeed. And how quickly things change. Not only did Verlander and Kate Upton marry and Verlander add a World Series ring in 2017 after being traded to the Houston Astros that year, but Verlander was teammates back then with, who else? Nationals ace Max Scherzer.