Washington (CNN)U.S. Capitol Police converged Wednesday on a small manned aircraft that has landed on the west front of the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. Police have taken the pilot into custody.
"The U.S. Capitol Police is investigating a gyro copter with a single occupant that has landed on the grassy area of the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. The U.S. Capitol Police continues to investigate with one person detained and temporary street closures in the immediate area," said Capitol Police Lt. Kimberly Schneider in a statement to CNN.
According to White House spokesman Eric Schultz, the President has been briefed on the situation.
The Tampa Bay Times is reporting that the pilot is a mailman from Florida who planned the flight to protest the Supreme Court decision in Citizens' United case and the influence of outside money in politics. He told the Times that he wanted to deliver mail to lawmakers outlining his complaints.
A friend of the pilot who says he's known the man for years tells CNN that "there's nothing on the helicopter that is dangerous" and that the this flight was meant to send a message to Congress about campaign finance reform.
"He has no weapons or anything else," said Michael Shanahan. "I know him personally. He's like a pitbull when he has an idea. He wants to wake up the country."
Shanahan said the pilot called him before he took off.
"He's upset that politicians can be bought and sold at auction, and I agree with him. That's the point he's trying [to make]" Shanahan added.
"Happy he made it alive. I want to thank the people who decided not to kill him."
Ain't that the truth?
I'm sure the PTB will make a quick example of him for his temerity.
The guy has earned his asterisk in history though.