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Vehicle Hits Security Barrier Near White House, Driver Arrested


A Secret Service officer checks a white passenger vehicle that struck a security barrier that guards the southwest entrance to the White House grounds off of 17th Street in Washington, Feb. 23, 2018.

The U.S. Secret Service said a vehicle rammed a security barrier at the White House Friday and the driver was immediately apprehended and arrested.

In a statement, the agency identified the driver as a 35-year-old woman who is a resident of La Vergne, Tennessee.

Officials say the woman was charged Friday with unspecified criminal violations and turned over to the District of Columbia police department, which identified the suspect as Jessica R. Ford.

A Secret Service officer rushes past reporters after a vehicle rammed into a security barrier near the White House, Feb. 23, 2018, in Washington.
A Secret Service officer rushes past reporters after a vehicle rammed into a security barrier near the White House, Feb. 23, 2018, in Washington.

Ford was someone whom the Secret Service said it had previous encounters with near the White House, “resulting in numerous arrests for a variety of criminal violations.”

The White House was on lockdown for about an hour Friday after the vehicle struck the barrier. The Secret Service said the car “did not breach the security barrier of the White House complex” and said no shots were fired during the incident and no security personnel were injured.

Witnesses reported seeing armed uniform agents running to positions, while streets surrounding the White House were cordoned off.

Officials say President Donald Trump was at the White House at the time of the incident, hosting Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Trump praised the Secret Service’s response to the incident in a tweet Friday: “Thank you to the great men and women of the United States @SecretService for a job well done!”

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