Bullet hits White House window; Suspect sought

This image provided by the U.S. Park Police shows an undated image of Oscar Ortega. AP Photo/U.S. Park Police

WASHINGTON - U.S. authorities are investigating two bullets that hit the White House, one of them apparently cracking a window on the residential level while President Barack Obama was traveling.

The Secret Service was investigating whether the bullets are connected to reports of shots fired Friday night while Obama was headed to a summit in Hawaii. The Secret Service said it discovered the bullet holes Tuesday and that the bullet that hit the window was stopped by ballistic glass.

On Wednesday, officials could be seen taking photographs of a window on the south face of the executive mansion. The window they were inspecting is in front of the so-called Yellow Oval Room, according to a White House website. The room is in the middle of the living quarters on the floor that includes the president's bedroom and the Lincoln Bedroom.

The location of the second bullet was not disclosed by the Secret Service, which said only that the bullet "was found on the exterior of the White House."

The discovery of the bullet holes follows reports of gunfire near the White House on Friday night. Witnesses heard shots and saw two speeding vehicles in the area.

The Secret Service said it has not conclusively connected Friday's incident with the bullets found at the White House. Previously, authorities had said the White House did not appear to have been targeted Friday night.

After Friday's shooting, an assault rifle was recovered from the scene. Police also found an abandoned car Friday night near the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge that crosses the Potomac River to Virginia.

U.S. Park Police spokesman Sgt. David Schlosser has said items found in the vehicle connected it to Oscar Ramiro Ortega, and they believe he is connected to Friday's shooting.

Police now have an arrest warrant for Ortega.

He is believed to be living in the Washington area but is from Idaho, according to Idaho Falls Police Department spokeswoman Joelyn Hansen. He was reported missing Oct. 31 by his family. Police in Arlington, Virginia, stopped him on Friday morning after a citizen called in a report of somebody "circling the area," according to Arlington Police Lt. Joe Kantor.

When police stopped Ortega, he was on foot, Kantor said. Police took photos of him but had no cause to detain him, Kantor said.

In 2010, there were a series of pre-dawn shootings at military buildings in the Washington area, including the Pentagon and the National Museum of the Marine Corps. Police charged a Marine Corps reservist with those shootings earlier this year. The suspect, Yonathan Melaku, remains in custody.

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