A person with knowledge of the situation confirmed on Wednesday that laboratory testing for the material discovered in the White House on Sunday was cocaine.
“Previous field testing showed a positive result for cocaine, but the substance was sent for further evaluation and testing, the Secret Service had said previously. The substance was found near the ground floor entrance to the West Wing, the person said. The location is where staff-led tours of the White House pass through on their way into the building,” CNN reported.
“The substance was found near where guests are asked to leave their cell phones before proceeding into the West Wing. Sources had previously described the substance as a white powder found in a small, zipped bag. It was found by Secret Service personnel conducting routine rounds of the building. The discovery of the substance on Sunday evening triggered a brief evacuation as part of what the Secret Service described as ‘precautionary closures,’” the outlet added.
President Joe Biden spent the weekend at Camp David and arrived back at the White House Tuesday morning. Officials are working to determine who brought cocaine into the building.
Tours of the West Wing frequently occur at night or on weekends and can be given by White House employees. Visitors must pass through security screening to get inside the White House and are then instructed to put their phones in tiny boxes before going into the West Wing. The cocaine was discovered next to these crates, according to officials.
“A spokesman for the Secret Service, Anthony Guglielmi, said previously that the D.C. fire department determined that the substance, which was found in a ‘work area of the West Wing,’ did not present a threat. A spokesman for the Secret Service, Anthony Guglielmi, said previously that the D.C. fire department had determined that the substance, which was found in a “work area of the West Wing,” did not present a threat,” the Washington Post reported
The U.S. Secret Service found an “unknown item” late on Sunday, which led to the evacuation of the White House grounds.
Secret Service units blocked off roads around the President’s official residence, while a DC Fire Department hazmat team was dispatched to the location to investigate. All road closures have now been lifted, the spokesperson confirmed.
“U.S. Secret Service Uniform Division Officers located an unknown item on the White House complex. As a precaution, the White House grounds were evacuated, and the DC Fire Departments Hazmat team responded,” a USSS spokesperson told Fox News.
“Precautionary closures were implemented around the White House complex this evening after an unknown item was discovered by Uniformed Division Officers,” agency spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said in his Twitter post.
“Precautionary closures will be lifted soon as DC Fire has cleared the unknown item as non-hazardous,” Guglielmi stated in his follow-up tweet.
A previous report revealed three businesses in D.C. had been destroyed on Sunday morning.
The D.C. Metropolitan Police Department said in a statement: “Detectives from the Metropolitan Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division and Agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Washington Field Division seek the public’s assistance in identifying suspects and a vehicle in reference to Destruction of Property offenses that occurred on Sunday, July 2, 2023, in the District.”
The press release added:
–At approximately 4:30 am, the suspect detonated an explosive device on the sidewalk outside of the ATM at the Truist Bank located in the 2300 block of Washington Place, Northeast then fled the scene in a vehicle. The explosive device caused damage to the location. CCN: 23-106-401.
–At approximately 4:36 am, the suspect detonated an explosive device on the sidewalk in front of the doors at the Nike Store located in the 700 block of H Street, Northeast, then fled the scene in a vehicle. The explosive device caused damage to the location. CCN: 23-106-429