Man who set self on fire outside White House not believed to be threat to President

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CNN's Jeremy Diamond reports that a man lit himself on fire in front of the White House, according to the Secret Service.

Posted: Apr 14, 2019 8:28 AM

A man who set himself on fire in front of the White House on Friday afternoon was determined not to be a threat to President Donald Trump, the Secret Service said.

A cloud of smoke was visible near the White House around 3 p.m. ET, the Secret Service said, forcing the closure of part of Pennsylvania Avenue and 17th Street.

"A male subject operating an electronic wheelchair-type scooter lit his outer jacket on fire while sitting along Pennsylvania Ave. outside the North Fence Line," the Secret Service tweeted. "Uniformed Division Officers immediately responded, extinguished the fire and rendered first aid."

Reporters saw the man being transported into an ambulance. The agency added, "The male subject has been transported to a local hospital with what appears to be non-life threatening injuries."

A Secret Service spokesperson told CNN that the man is believed to have mental health problems and was treated for first-degree burns, and that the agency does not believe there was any threat to the President.

Heightened security measures were nonetheless seen on the White House grounds Friday afternoon, with the White House press taken off the North Lawn into the briefing room.

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