Armed Intruder Enters White House

Armed Intruder Enters White House

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Sarah Sabatke – 23 News Staff Writer

The Secret Service has tightened White House security since an armed man scaled the fence and entered the property on Friday, Sept. 19.

The man has been identified as 42-year-old Omar J. Gonzalez, an Iraq war veteran and a US Army medal recipient. The Obama’s were away from the residence when Gonzalez entered the grounds and breached security while brandishing a knife, according to ABC News.

The Secret Service immediately increased security after the incident, but the embarrassing breach in security brings in to question the agency’s ability to respond to future intruders.

“There will be a thorough investigation into the incident.” said Ed Donovan, the spokesman for the Secrete Service.

According to The Washington Post, Gonzalez had no prior convictions and tested negative for drug use after his arrest. The veteran was discharged from the Army in September 2003 after completing his service obligation; he now faces serving time in a federal prison.

The president responded to the incident by expressing his confidence and gratitude towards the work of the Secret Service in protecting his family, according to White House spokesman Frank Benenati. Gonzalez is set to appear in federal court on Monday with the charge of unlawfully entering restricted grounds while carrying a weapon.

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