March 20, 2017 / 11:36 PM / in 7 months

Man arrested at White House gate claimed Trump telepathy link

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A Virginia man charged with making a bomb threat at a White House gate claimed to be communicating with President Donald Trump telepathically and said the bomb he had claimed to have was actually an asteroid, according to court documents filed on Monday.

FILE PHOTO: Secret Service agents stand guard after a shooting incident near the White House in Washington DC, U.S. May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/File Photo

Sean Keoughan, 29, of Roanoke, was arrested late on Saturday after he drove up to a White House checkpoint in a stolen Impala rental car. He got out and told Secret Service officers that he had a bomb, an Secret Service affidavit said.

“There’s a bomb in the trunk. This is a test,” he said before putting his hands in the air and being handcuffed.

Keoughan said he had a bag in the trunk containing an asteroid. He said that Trump had told him to tell officers that it held a bomb, the court filing said.

Keoughan said he was in touch with Trump telepathically through a process that let him communicate with high-level officials, the Secret Service and Delta Force, an elite Army unit, the affidavit said.

Keoughan said he had received psychiatric care and had used “every drug.” He told officers he had twice attempted suicide, once through a heroin overdose, the court document said.

Keoughan made an initial appearance on Monday in U.S. District Court on a charge of threatening and conveying false information about the use of an explosive. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison.

Keoughan is being represented by a federal defender.

William Rawlinson, 58, of Silver Spring, Maryland, was also arrested on Saturday for crossing a White House security barrier. He faces a misdemeanor illegal entry charge.

In the first major security breach since Trump became president in January, 26-year-old Jonathan Tran, of Milpitas, California, was arrested for climbing over White House barriers on March 10. He wandered the grounds for 16 minutes before he was found, the Secret Service has said.

Reporting by Ian Simpson; Editing by Leslie Adler

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