A man is in custody after crashing a U-Haul into a security barrier outside Lafayette Park near the White House Monday night, the Secret Service and United States Park Police reported.
United States Park Police identified Sai Varshith Kandula, 19, of Chesterfield, Missouri, as the driver of the vehicle.
Kandula was arrested and charged with assault with a dangerous weapon; reckless operation of a motor vehicle; threatening to kill, kidnap, or inflict harm on a president, vice president, or family member; destruction of federal property, and trespassing.
“Shortly before 10:00 p.m. Monday, Secret Service Uniformed Division officers detained the driver of a box truck after the vehicle collided with security barriers on the north side of Layfatette Square at 16th Street,” Secret Service Chief of Communications Anthony Guglielmi said in a statement on Twitter.
“There were no injuries to any Secret Service or White House personnel and the cause and manner of the crash remain under investigation.”
Roads and pedestrian walkways were closed as officials investigated.
Guglielmi later reported the D.C. police had deemed the U-Haul “safe.“
“Preliminary investigation reveals the driver may have intentionally struck the security barriers at Lafayette Square. Charges will be filed by the United States Park Police with investigative support from the Secret Service.”
The man, a U.S. citizen, allegedly made threatening statements aimed at President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, a law enforcement source told CBS News.
The same source also told the outlet Kandula did not show up on any watch lists, nor did he appear to have any significant record.
No explosives or weapons were found inside the truck, CBS News also reported.
A report from CNN affiliate WUSA says investigators “apparently found a Nazi flag with belongings inside the truck.” Other items included what appeared to be a black backpack and a roll of duct tape.
Below, watch Twitter user @Itzajobi’s clip of the incident, verified by Reuters, showing the box truck crashing into the security bollards outside Layfette Park.
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