President Donald Trump was today abruptly ushered out of a briefing room during the middle of a White House press briefing by US Secret Service after a shooting.
A male suspect has been taken to hospital after being shot by a member of the Secret Service outside the White House, at 17th Street and Pennsylvania Ave.
Mr Trump returned minutes after being escorted out, saying there was a “shooting” that was now “under control.”
“There was an actual shooting and somebody’s been taken to the hospital,” Mr Trump said.
The president said the shots were fired by law enforcement, saying he believed the man who was shot was armed.
“It was the suspect who was shot,” Mr Trump said.He said the shooting “might not have had anything to do with me. It might’ve been something else.”
“The wall – as you know, the fencing, especially the new fencing that they put up, is very powerful. But it was on the outside of the White House.”
When asked by a reporter if he was left rattled by what happened, Mr Trump replied: “I don’t know. Do I seem rattled?
“He said “the world’s always been a dangerous place”.
The Secret Service confirmed on Twitter an “officer involved shooting” had taken place and that the suspect and a Secret Service officer had both been taken to hospital with unspecified injuries.
“At no time during this incident was the White House complex breached or were any protectees in danger,” the statement said.
Law enforcement officials are still trying to determine the suspect’s motive.
The District of Columbia fire department said the man suffered serious or possibly critical injuries.Authorities were investigating whether the man has a history of mental illness.
Mr Trump said he was escorted to the Oval Office by the agent. The White House was placed on lockdown following the incident.
The president praised the work of Secret Service personnel for their work in keeping him safe.
9News reporter Alexis Daish said Mr Trump had only been speaking for a few minutes when a member of the Secret Service came into the press room.
“He actually went straight up to the president and was whispering in his ear.”
The president, you could tell this was not planned, the president sort of looked a bit surprised and said ‘Oh okay, we need to leave.
Daish said a Fox news reporter who was outside the press briefing room reported hearing two gunshots.
Video on social media purportedly showed paramedics on the scene and armed police cordoning off the area, with weapons drawn.