LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com/AP)— A Northern California man appeared in court Saturday after being accused of jumping the White House fence the previous night.
President Trump was home at the time. He was asked about the incident at his golf course in Northern Virginia during a working lunch with his cabinet.
“The secret service did a fantastic job,” Trump said. “It was a troubled person. It was very sad.”
The Secret Service says at 11:30 p.m. Friday, Jonathan Tran, 26, climbed the perimeter fence between the East Wing and Treasury Department. He was caught near the South Portico entrance.
That’s the entrance leads to the President’s private residence.
A police report says a Secret Service agent asked Tran if he had a White House Pass. The suspect answered “No. I’m a friend of the President. I have an appointment.”
Tran allegedly had two cans of mace and his passport inside a backpack. The report went on to say he admitted to jumping the fence. The Secret Service says standard practice is to turn intruders over to local police.
During the Obama Administration – there were multiple White House intrusions. In turn — the perimeter fence was strengthened and raised and extended spikes were put in as an interim solution. Joe Clancy was brought in to lead the Secret Service after the previous director resigned. Clancy retired a week ago. The President is still deciding on his replacement.
No hazardous materials were found during a search of a backpack the individual carried. The Secret Service also says a search of the south and north grounds of the White House complex found “nothing of concern to security operations.” Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly was briefed on the incident.
Tran’s brother says he had been depressed about losing his job at an electrical engineering company.
(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press contributed to this report.)