Man barges into White House after jumping lawn fence
WASHINGTON — A man jumped a fence at the White House late Friday and made it through the North Portico doors into the building before he was captured, Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary told CNN.
Part of the White House was evacuated after a disturbance was initially detected on the North Lawn, according to a CNN reporter who was among those hustled from the building.
The first family was not at the White House at the time, but other people were.
President Obama had left just four minutes earlier with his daughters via helicopter from the South Lawn to visit Camp David.
The suspect, 42-year-old Omar Gonzalez of Copperas Cove, Texas, was apprehended just after making it inside the doors. He was taken to George Washington Medical Center for a medical evaluation, Leary said.
Gonzalez was known to Secret Service, said an official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. The official would not say how or why. He had not been arrested by the Secret Service before.
“He appeared to responding officers to be unarmed, and that turned out to be true. He ignored officers’ calls for him to stop and ran towards the White House,” Leary said.
It’s unclear how Gonzalez made his way onto the grounds.
A CNN crew saw Secret Service agents standing over what appeared to be a man on the North Portico.
A man believed to be the suspect was later seen being loaded onto an ambulance.
More than an hour later, Secret Service agents and dogs were seen standing near where the disturbance occurred.
CNN White House producer Becky Brittain said she has never been evacuated off White House grounds in her nine years of reporting there.
“This time they were very serious about getting us all out of the White House very quickly,” she said.