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Reuters
Monday, Mar 20, 2017

World

Man arrested after claiming bomb at White House gates

Reuters | Monday, Mar 20, 2017

Photo: Reuters

A 29-year-old man who was arrested near the White House late on Saturday falsely told the US Secret Service he had a bomb, according to a police report released on Sunday.

Sean Patrick Keoughan of Roanoke, Virginia, was arrested after he pulled up to the security checkpoint near the White House just after 11pm on Saturday in a stolen 2017 Chevrolet Impala.

Keoughan told the Secret Service: "There's a bomb in the trunk" while holding something in his right hand, the police report said.

As he was arrested, Keoughan added: "This is a test," the report added.

The suspect was charged with false bomb threats and unauthorised use of a vehicle.

It was the second scare at the presidential residence on Saturday after a person jumped over a bike rack in a buffer zone in front of the White House at 12:40 p.m.

Washington police said in a separate report that 58-year-old William Bryant Rawlinson of Silver Spring, Maryland, was arrested for unlawful entry. The Secret Service said Rawlinson was "standing behind the security barrier in an unauthorised area, yelling nonsensical statements," the report said.

President Donald Trump was in Florida at the time of both incidents.It was not immediately clear on Sunday if either suspect had been released.

There have been three security incidents at the White House in a little more than a week.

The Secret Service has been criticised after it said a man who scaled the White House fence on March 10 was on the property's grounds for 16 minutes before being detained while Mr Trump was home.

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