Published December 20, 2015
Secret Service officers apprehended a man who jumped over a White House fence on Thursday and appeared to be heading toward presidential residence.
Officers with guns drawn ordered the man to lie down. The Secret Service said the man was in custody Thursday night.
"There are frequent protests outside the White House gates, so it initially seemed like nothing," said Fox News' Ed Henry, who was preparing to shoot a segment on the North Lawn at the time of the incident. "But just seconds before air, we heard Secret Service officers shouting at someone who appeared to have jumped the White House fence -- as literally dozens of tourists started sprinting away from the fence and toward Lafayette Park for safety -- and officers with extremely large assault weapons started circling the North Lawn in defensive posture. Very large police dogs also started barking and were ready to pounce."
Henry reported that the man appeared to be in his late 20s or early 30s, and said he overheard Secret Service officers communicating to each other that the jumper carried a stuffed animal, not a weapon, which might explain why no shots were fired.
Secret Service officers deal with fence jumpers or bags tossed over the fence as serious potential threats. Henry reported that although fence jumpers are an occasional occurrence, this incident stood out because "it felt like it went on for several minutes without the Secret Service apprehending the individual."
President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama were not present at the White House during the incident. They were performing a service project at The Inspired Teaching School in Washington D.C., stuffing backpacks assembled for homeless children as part of a Sept. 11 service project.
Fox News' Ed Henry and The Associated Press contributed to this report.