A U.S. Secret Service officer shot a man with a gun who approached a checkpoint outside the White House and refused to drop his weapon, the Secret Service said.
The White House was briefly placed on a security alert after the Friday afternoon shooting, which happened within view of sightseers as sidewalks were crowded with families, school groups and government workers.
The armed man approached the checkpoint on E Street shortly after 3 p.m., and ignored repeated orders from the officer to drop his gun, according to a statement from David Iacovetti, a Secret Service deputy assistant director.
The officer fired one shot at the man and the gun was recovered at the scene, Iacovetti said. The man was transported in critical condition to a nearby hospital, an emergency medical services spokesman said.
President Barack Obama was away playing golf, but Vice President Joe Biden was in the White House complex and was secured during the lockdown, his office said. The security alert was lifted about an hour later.
The gunman never made it inside the White House complex, and no one else was injured, the Secret Service said.
A U.S. law enforcement official said Friday evening that authorities had identified the gunman as Jesse Oliveri of Ashland, Pennsylvania. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to release the information.
Federal agents found ammunition inside a Toyota sedan, parked nearby on Constitution Avenue, that the gunman was believed to have driven, the official said.
The Latest on the shooting outside the White House (all times local):
The shooting outside the White House Friday happened within view of sightseers, as the surrounding sidewalks were crowded with families, school groups and government workers.
Community activist Akil Patterson heard a single gunshot while he waited in a security line. Within seconds, a security guard shouted for people to drop to the ground, and he was quickly evacuated to the street.
Patterson was at the White House to get a presidential award for his work with Baltimore teens.
He says his community work aims to “get rid of the notion that gun violence is the answer.”
Sightseer Jenna Noelle of Austin, Texas, said she had just taken a photo in front of the White House when she noticed a man harassing an agent. Then, “as we were walking away we heard a shot fired, then some people started running away and agents had guns and were evacuating people.”
The Secret Service has tweeted to say that “all Secret Service protectees are safe” after a shooting outside the White House.
Separately, a White House official says no one in the building or associated with the White House was injured, and everyone inside is safe and accounted for.
This official said President Obama was made aware of the shooting. Obama left the White House more than an hour earlier and was golfing at Andrews Air Force base at the time.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity given the developing situation.
The White House has been placed on a security alert after a shooting on a street outside.
U.S. Park Police said on Twitter that the shooting happened on West Executive Drive on Friday afternoon.
District of Columbia Fire and EMS spokesman Doug Buchanan says one patient was taken to a nearby hospital in critical condition shortly after 3 p.m.
A D.C. police spokesman said the Secret Service was investigating.
The White House grounds were shut down to pedestrian traffic, locking staff members and reporters indoors. The president was not on premises. He’d left two hours earlier for an afternoon round of golf.