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Man who jumped White House fence has 'mental health problems'

Dominic Adesanya was detained on the North Lawn on Wednesday

Heather Saul
Thursday 23 October 2014 12:18 BST
The dog attacks the man on the North Lawn
The dog attacks the man on the North Lawn

A man who scaled the White House fence on Wednesday night has mental health problems, his father has said.

Dominic Adesanya, of Bel Air, Maryland, was swiftly detained after landing on the North Lawn at about 7.15pm on Wednesday evening.

After news of his arrest broke, the 23-year-old's father told WMAR his son is "paranoid" and hears voices.

“It’s hard to be in your house and not know if the person you’re living with is trustworthy and to know they’re mentally disturbed like he is," he told the network.

“We wanted to get him help, and we’ve been asking the government to give him help and nobody has wanted to help us get help for him."

He said his son had gone to the White House before, "wanting to talk to the President to tell the President about his situation".

In dramatic video footage obtained by Fox News of the event, Adesanya is seen stood in white shorts and pulling up his top as if to suggest he is not armed.

Seconds after landing on the lawn, Adesanya was immediately attacked by one of the security dogs. Security footage shows the moment Adesanya responds by kicking the dog in face and running, before being swiftly attacked by another canine.

The second dog jumps up to his chest level and drags him to the ground. Adesanya is then seen kicking and punching both dogs before officers run in and apprehend him.

Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary said two dogs were taken to a veterinarian for injuries sustained during the incident. Adesanya was also transported to hospital for treatment, although he did not provide any further details on what injuries he sustained.

Adesanya was unarmed when he was arrested, Mr Leary said. Charges are now pending against him.

The incident came a month after a previous White House fence jumper carrying a knife sprinted across the same lawn, past armed uniformed agents and entered the mansion before he was felled in the ceremonial East Room and taken into custody.

Additional reporting by AP

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