06/16/2015 01:09 pm ET | Updated Jun 16, 2015

White House Intruder Sentenced To 17 Months In Prison Less Time Served

By Ian Simpson

WASHINGTON, June 16 (Reuters) - White House fence jumper Omar Gonzalez was sentenced on Tuesday to 17 months in prison, less the time already served for bursting into the executive mansion with a knife last year.

Gonzalez, 43, an Army veteran from Copperas Cove, Texas, has already served nine months in jail. He also will face three years of supervised release following his time in prison under the sentence handed down by U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer.

Gonzalez had pleaded guilty to charges that he climbed over the White House fence in September, pushed past a Secret Service agent guarding a door and entered the executive mansion.

The high-profile breach played a part in a shake-up of Secret Service leadership.

Gonzalez's attorney, federal public defender David Bos, had sought a sentence of time served for the nine months he has been held in jail, followed by three years of supervised release.

Bos had argued that Gonzalez is a first-time offender and an Iraq War veteran. He suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and is undergoing mental health treatment, he has said.

Federal prosecutors had wanted a 21-month sentence. They said Gonzalez needlessly endangered White House occupants and Secret Service officers.

Gonzalez was carrying a folding knife when he was tackled by guards inside the White House. He told a Secret Service agent that he needed to tell President Barack Obama that the atmosphere was collapsing.

Police discovered ammunition, a machete, knives and weapons accessories in his truck. The Obamas were not in the White House when the incident occurred.

Gonzalez pleaded guilty in March to entering a restricted building while carrying a deadly weapon and assaulting a Secret Service agent. (Reporting by Ian Simpson; Editing by Sandra Maler)


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