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Air Force investigating after man gained unauthorized access to Joint Base Andrews

Air Force investigating after man gained unauthorized access to Joint Base Andrews
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The Air Force has launched an investigation after a man on Thursday gained unauthorized access to Joint Base Andrews, the military installation in Maryland that houses Air Force One.

The man, who made it past the flight line and entered a C-40 aircraft assigned to the 89th Airlift Wing, was detained by security forces on the base, according to an Air Force statement released on Friday. 

“Everybody’s taking this very seriously,” top Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby told reporters.

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Acting Air Force Secretary John Roth and chief of staff Charles Brown plan to order the service’s inspector general “to fully investigate this issue,” Kirby added.

The “thorough investigation” will also include looks at installations worldwide and security protocols across the force, he said.

The intruder, described only as an adult male, was booked by the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations and given a federal summons for trespassing after he was detained. He was turned over to local law enforcement, given that he had two outstanding warrants, according to the release.

The man did not harm any personnel and there is no indication that he has any links to extremist groups.

“The security of our installation is paramount,” Col. Roy Oberhaus, the vice wing commander of the 316th Wing at Joint Base Andrews, said in the release. “This was a serious breach of security and Joint Base Andrews is investigating the incident to determine how this happened so it doesn’t happen again.”

Military Times reported that the man was transported to the Prince George’s County Department of Corrections as he had an open warrant stemming from Virginia. No details were given about the reason for the warrants.

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Kirby referred questions on the man’s existing warrants to local law enforcement.

Following the incident, the base is suspending its Trusted Traveler program, which allows those with valid clearance to vouch for up to 10 people in their vehicle, Military Times reported.

Kirby said that the base “adjusted some of their security protocols” this morning, but did not go into details.

A White House official also told the outlet that the intruder was "nowhere near” Air Force One, which President Biden was set to use Friday to fly to Delaware.