Police identify man that crashed into White House barrier after running two lights

D.C police respond to a deadly White House barrier crash on May 4, 2024. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)

D.C. police have identified the driver who died after crashing into a White House complex barrier on Saturday night.

57-year-old James Chester Lewis Jr., of Matthews, North Carolina, crashed into a security barrier along the outer perimeter of the White House complex, according to police.

The preliminary investigation found that Lewis was traveling at a high speed westbound in the 1400 block of Pennsylvania Avenue at around 10:16 p.m. He drove through two red lights before striking a vehicle barrier at the intersection of 15th Street and E Street.

Lewis was found with severe injuries after the collision and was pronounced dead by officers at the scene.

Anthony Guglielmi, chief of communications for the United States Secret Service, released a statement on the agency’s response to the crash after midnight Sunday.

“Security protocols were implemented as officers cleared the vehicle and attempted to render aid to the driver who was discovered deceased,” Guglielmi said. “There was no threat to the White House.”

The crash is still under investigation by D.C. police and the Secret Service.

A map of the crash location is included below.

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Emily Venezky

Emily Venezky is a digital writer/editor at WTOP. Emily grew up listening to and reading local news in Los Angeles, and she’s excited to cover stories in her chosen home of the DMV. She recently graduated from The George Washington University, where she studied political science and journalism.

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