The Secret Service team guarding the White House when an intruder broke in made a number of previously unreported mistakes, according to a new report in The New York Times.
Notably, a key Secret Service agent was allegedly in his van on his personal cell phone instead of at his post when a man scaled the White House fence and entered the building, on Sept. 17.
An Iraq veteran named Omar Gonzalez was later charged with the crime.
Additionally, the unnamed agent did not have his radio earpiece in and did not have his second, required radio. The agent only saw the intruder after he had climbed over the fence.
The Times’ account of the incident was based on an executive summary of a report presented to members of Congress on Thursday.
The report, which has not yet been made public, also found the Secret Service’s alarm and radio systems failed to function properly, and other responding officers did not notice Gonzalez until he was beyond their reach.
Ultimately, Gonzalez was able to enter the White House, run through the building’s East Room, and open the door of the Green Room. His path took him past the staircase leading to the president’s bedroom.
That incident and other recent controversies led to the resignation of Secret Service Director Julia Pierson.
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