(U.S. Park Police/AP Photo)
Jason Ryan, Pierre Thomas and Jack Cloherty report:
The man accused of shooting at the White House last Friday has been charged with attempting to assassinate the president of the United States.
Charges filed today allege, “Oscar Ortega-Hernandez thought President Obama was ‘the anti-Christ’ and that Ortega-Hernandez ‘needed to kill him.’”
The suspect apparently was convinced the government was in a “conspiracy” against him.
The president was not at the White House at the time of the shooting.
Court documents filed against Ortega-Hernandez charge him with attempting to assassinate the president and note that FBI investigators “located several confirmed bullet impacts on the south side of the [White House] building on or above the second story.”
At least one bullet hit a window located outside the first family’s residence. The round was stopped by the bulletproof glass.
The incident unfolded just after 9 p.m. Friday after witnesses heard gunshots on the National Mall. Eyewitnesses heard approximately eight shots along Constitution Avenue just south of the White House grounds.
According to the eyewitnesses, the shooter was firing from inside a car.
Ortega-Hernandez allegedly fled the scene and abandoned his car by the National Institute of Peace by the State Department and fled on foot.
The criminal complaint filed in the case notes that investigators discovered a Romanian Cugir SA semi-automatic assault rifle with a large scope mounted on the weapon. Police who responded to the vehicle also discovered three magazines loaded with ammunition.
According to the criminal complaint, investigators from the U.S. Park Police and U.S. Secret Service interviewed witnesses who know Ortega-Hernandez who noted that he has become “agitated against the federal government.” One witness allegedly told investigators that Ortega-Hernandez wanted to “hurt” President Obama.
In Pittsburgh at a hearing today, federal Judge Cynthia Eddy ordered that Ortega-Hernandez be detained without bail. He is expected to be transferred to Washington, D.C., in the next several days.