Turns out the drone that circumvented White House radar detection and crashed into a tree on the presidential South Lawn yesterday was piloted by none other than a National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency government official. Woops!
In what was no doubt a tense conversation with Secret Service investigators, the man admitted to being less than sober at the time, and as a result losing control of his diminutive flying robot.
“The employee self-reported the incident Monday,” a spokesman told the New York Times, adding that, “[t]he employee was off duty and is not involved in work related to drones or unmanned aerial vehicles in any capacity at N.G.A.”
The Secret Service is reportedly analyzing video footage and conducting interviews to verify the man’s story. It is not yet known what, if any, penalties he will suffer as a result.
The drone crash was deemed significant not only because it is the most recent in a series of recent security breaches at the White House, but also because it exposed a serious gap in the White House’s aerial monitoring system. In an interview with CNN on Tuesday, Obama admitted that the government wasn’t quite up to speed with the number of hobbyist and commercial drones in existence.