We’re hearing reports today that the alarm was turned off during the time the White House fence jumper was on the property:
Secret Service personnel removed the alarm sensors along an area of fence line when the agency raised its height in response to previous fence-jumping incidents as a way to make it harder to scale. Ironically, the very effort to prevent fence jumping appears to have permitted a particularly egregious intrusion.
One source said superiors in the Uniformed Division told Secret Service personnel to remove the sensors and piece them together for use elsewhere. They were never replaced.
There are at least 10 to 12 officers and agents, including supervisors from the Presidential Protective Division, monitoring these sensors at any given time. They do so from the Joint Operations Command Center or JOCC, which is located outside of the White House complex.
Some agents and officers also are questioning why Secret Service never released the K-9 unit to try to find an intruder after the alarms on the first fence the intruder scaled went off.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz weighs in below on details of what the intruder did in those 17 minutes:
The White House fence jumper who lingered on the ground unnoticed for 17 minutes was literally just hanging out in plain view with alarms blaring, and the Secret Service had no clue.
Congressman Jason Chaffetz tells TMZ he met with the Director of Homeland Security and the Acting Director of the Secret Service for an hour and a half Tuesday, and his conclusion … “It was even worse than I thought.”
Chaffetz says the surveillance video is shocking … the intruder was not darting around. Rather, he was “lingering,” “hanging out” on the grounds. At one point he took the time to bend down and tie his shoes.
The intruder at times peered through windows of the building, where Trump was inside. As we previously reported, he also jiggled a doorknob.
Chaffetz says some of the alarms failed but some went off, yet the intruder was not detected.
Secret Service agents did check the grounds, but not with any urgency. Alarms frequently go off for various reasons, and this time it was met with an inadequate response.
And Chaffetz says the video shows agents were simply “lackadaisical.” As he put it, “Everything went wrong.”
The congressman says he was promised there would be “big changes,” adding, “There better be.”