White House Intruder Got Into East Room; Secret Service In Congress


The man who jumped the White House fence and sprinted through the front door made it much farther into the building than previously known, overpowering a Secret Service agent and running through much of the main floor, the Washington Post reports. An alarm box near the front entrance of the White House designed to alert guards to an intruder had been muted at what officers believed was a request of the usher's office. The officer posted inside the front door appeared to be delayed in learning that intruder Omar Gonzalez was about to burst through.

Officers are trained that on learning of an intruder on the grounds. often through alarm boxes posted around the property, they must immediately lock the front door. After barreling past the guard inside the door, Gonzalez, who was carrying a knife, dashed past the stairway leading a half-flight up to the first family's living quarters. He then ran into the East Room, an ornate space often used for receptions or presidential addresses. Gonzalez was tackled by a counterassault agent at the far southern end of the East Room. Secret Service Director Julia Pierson has said the breach was “unacceptable.” and she will face tough questions today from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

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