Man Shot by Secret Service at White House: ‘I Came Here to Shoot People'

A gunman shot by a Secret Service agent outside the White House last month told an officer, "I came here to shoot people," according to charging documents filed Friday.

Jesse Olivieri, 31, of Ashland, Pennsylvania, was charged Friday with resisting or impeding certain officers or employees with a dangerous weapon, a federal offense carrying a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.

Witnesses reported gunfire in the 1600 block of E Street NW about 3:05 p.m. May 20, according to the affidavit. One witness walking in the 1600 block of Constitution Avenue NW saw Olivieri sitting in a parked Toyota Camry, then heard a pop and turned to see Olivieri holding a silver handgun with a long barrel. Olivieri was him walk quickly through the grass toward the White House.

A short time later, Secret Service officers saw Olivieri, holding the gun openly, pass through the security gate near the White House's southwest grounds in the 1600 block of E Street NW and walk toward the security gate near E Street and South Place NW, the affidavit said. He refused repeated orders to stop and drop the weapon before a Secret Service agent shot him once.

Before he was taken to George Washington University Hospital, a Secret Service officer asked him why he went to the White House. "I came here to shoot people," he replied.

A loaded .22-caliber semiautomatic handgun was taken from Olivieri, the affidavit said. A spent .22-caliber shell casing was found near the Camry on Constitution Avenue, and more ammunition was found in the car.

The shooting occurred within view of tourists outside the White House, near sidewalks crowded with families, school groups and government workers.

The White House was on lockdown for about an hour after the incident. President Barack Obama was not at the White House at the time, but Vice President Joe Biden was inside the building, administration officials said.

Olivieri remains hospitalized.

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