The North Lawn of the White House has been placed on lockdown after a suspicious package was thrown over a fence, officials say, though specific details were not immediately disclosed. One person is in custody.
The incident began at around 12:15 p.m. ET on Monday, a few minutes after Obama arrived back at the White House following a visit to Arlington National Cemetery. It appears that the lockdown is limited to the North Lawn and the Secret Service is investigating
The incident is believed to have started when an unidentified person – reported to be a woman – threw a container over the North Lawn fence of the White House. The person was quickly taken into custody and the container – which also contains papers – is now being investigated.
Hazmat trucks, fire crews and ambulances were seen in the area and reporters at the White House were not allowed to approach the area of the incident. The U.S. Secret Service did not immediately respond to requests for information.
The White House has regularly experienced security scares over the past few years, though the incidents usually involve fence jumpers who are quickly taken into custody.
Most recently, the White House was placed on lockdown on May 22 when party balloons drifted over White House grounds and landed on the North Lawn, the roof of the press office and the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. That alert was quickly lifted.
Days earlier, the White House was put on lockdown after an armed man identified as Jesse Olivieri was shot by the Secret Service at an outer perimeter checkpoint near the White House. Olivieri allegedly failed to drop the firearm before being shot.