WASHINGTON:President Barack Obama has been briefed on an incident in which two Secret Service officers are alleged to have driven a government-issued car into White House barricades last week after a party, a White House official said on Thursday.
The incident, which is under investigation, comes on the heels of a series of scandals about the conduct and leadership of the agency that protects the president and his family.
Secret Service Director Joe Clancy – chosen by Obama to lead the agency last month after a lengthy external review – asked the Inspector General of the Department of Homeland Security, an internal watchdog, to investigate the new incident.
“The president is aware of the allegations and supports Director Clancy’s decision to turn the investigation over to the DHS Inspector General for a thorough review,” a White House official said.
The Washington Post reported on Wednesday that one of the agents involved in the March 4 incident was a top member of Obama’s protective detail.
The agency was criticized as being too insular by an independent panel appointed in the wake of an intrusion last year, when a man with a knife scaled the White House fence and got deep inside the mansion before being stopped.
That incident prompted former Director Julia Pierson to resign.
She had been director for two years, named to the top job after agents were accused of hiring prostitutes during a 2012 trip to Colombia.