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White House Shooting Suspect Arrested In Pennsylvania

11/17/2011 09:51 AM ET

White House Shooting, witnesses say they heard shots fired at the White House on Friday and the suspect in the shooting was finally arrested on Tuesday. The suspect has an apparent obsession with President Barack Obama. The Secret Service discovered two bullets.

One bullet smashed into a window of the living quarters of the executive mansion but was stopped by ballistic glass.

The arrest of Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez, 21, came days after reports of shots fired on Friday night near the White House while Obama and his wife Michelle were on a trip to California and Hawaii. The president has since traveled on to Australia, second stop on a nine-day Asia-Pacific tour, and the White House had no comment on the unfolding events.

The U.S. Secret Service said it discovered Tuesday that the two bullets hit the White House. U.S. Park Police had earlier linked Ortega, a 21-year-old man from Idaho Falls, Idaho, to the reports of gunfire.

Authorities are investigating his mental health and say there are indications he believed his attack on the White House was part of a personal mission from God, according to a law enforcement official. There are also indications the man had become obsessed with Obama and the White House, according to two officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

Authorities said the bullets discovered Tuesday by the Secret Service have not been conclusively connected with the reports of gunfire near the White House on Friday night. On Friday, authorities found an abandoned vehicle with an assault rifle inside.

Ortega, 21, was arrested Wednesday afternoon at a hotel near Indiana, Pa., some 55 miles east of Pittsburgh, the Secret Service said. He was in Pennsylvania State Police custody. A tip from someone who saw and identified Ortega led to his arrest, Secret Service spokesman George Ogilvie said.

Witnesses on Friday reported hearing shots and seeing two speeding vehicles on Constitution Avenue near the White House. Authorities said they found an abandoned car, with the assault rifle inside, near the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge, which crosses the Potomac River to Virginia.

The bullet that hit the White House window was stopped by ballistic glass. The Secret Service didn’t disclose the location of the second bullet, saying only that it “was found on the exterior of the White House.”

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