Let’s face it – being the president is one of the most stressful jobs out there. You’d think that the guy could at least step out his back door for some fresh air without worrying about running into some weirdo having a walkabout on his lawn. Yet it seems like at least every few months we hear about someone who has managed to evade the gates, sensors, dogs, guards and various other methods set up to try and protect the president from unwanted guests.
We’ll take a look at 10 of the times people have gotten way too close to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue for comfort. You will not believe the lengths some people have gone through to try and get an unscheduled appointment with the commander in chief.
10. Caught Hanging Out
In late March 2017, Marci Anderson Wahl was arrested for scaling the White House fence three times over a course of a week. Once, officers discovered her hanging from the inside of the fence by her shoelaces, which were caught on top of the fence according to a police report on the incident. She said she was inspired by the next guy on the list.
9. He’s The Wanderer
On March 10, 2017, Jonathan Tran jumped multiple fences at the White House complex. He set off some alarms but avoided other sensors and evaded Secret Service officers for 17 minutes. He even managed to get close enough to rattle a door handle at the south portico entrance to the White House. If you think that’s scary, check out the next entry!
8. Can I Help You?
In November of 1975, Gerald Gainous climbed over the White House fence and roamed the grounds for almost an hour and a half before finally being arrested within a few feet of the president’s daughter, who was unloading camera equipment from her car near the south portico. He would go on to be arrested three more times for fence hopping.
7. Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting
In October of 1978, Anthony Henry donned his best karate whites, kicked off his shoes, and climbed over the White House fence to protest the use of “In God We Trust” on U.S. currency. He was not, however, fast as lightning, and guards cut him off near the front fountain. Talk about fast as lightning, check out #6!
6. Pint-Sized Prowler
In August of 2014, there was a brief scare when a toddler broke away from his parents and squeezed through the White House fence onto the grounds. He didn’t get too far before being nabbed. A spokesman for the Secret Service said, “We were going to wait until he learned to talk to question him, but in lieu of that he got a timeout and was sent on his way with his parents.”