Man picked up outside White House with knife

Thursday, December 6, 2001

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A man picked up by Secret Service officials outside a White House gate Thursday carried a foot-long knife and had a cache of loaded weapons in his pickup truck parked nearby.

Secret Service spokesman Jim Mackin described the man, who was still being questioned at midmorning, as white, approximately 26 years old and with no prior record on file with the Secret Service.

Uniformed officers at the White House's southwest gate for staff noticed the man "acting suspiciously and inappropriately" just outside the gate at around 7 a.m. EST, Mackin said. They approached the man, patted him down and found the knife.

The man then volunteered that he had more weapons, directing officers to his parked truck opposite the Treasury Department on the far side of the White House complex. Officers found an SKS assault rifle in plain view on the front seat, Mackin said. Also in the truck, which had Idaho plates registered to the man, were a rifle with scope, a handgun, a Kevlar helmet and a bulletproof vest.

At least two of the weapons were loaded, Mackin said. Officials shut down the street for nearly two hours while they checked other suspicious items in the vehicle.

Weapons and other charges are pending against the man, based on the results of his interview, but have not yet been filed, Mackin said.

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