Man shot near White House after brandishing gun

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Shooting reported across White House

WASHINGTON, May 20 (Reuters) - Law enforcement officers shot a man who brandished a gun near the White House on Friday while President Barack Obama was out golfing, and the man was taken to hospital in critical condition, officials and witnesses said.

The Secret Service, which protects the president, briefly locked down the White House as a precaution.

The shooting took place near 17th and E streets, near what is known as the South Lawn outside the executive mansion, which serves as the home and offices of the president.

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Man shot near White House after brandishing gun
Secret Service agents stands on the North Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on security alert after shooting on street outside. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
A Secret Service agent stands on the North Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on security alert after shooting on street outside. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
Secret Service agents stands on the North Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on security alert after shooting on street outside. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
A Secret Service agent orders people into buildings near the entrance to the West Wing of the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on security alert after shooting on street outside. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
U.S. Secret Service officers block 17th Street next to the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on a security alert after a shooting on a street outside. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Police secure a location after a shooting near the White House in Washington DC, U.S. May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
A U.S. Secret Service officer blocks Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street near the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on a security alert after a shooting on a street outside. The Eisenhower Executive Office Building in in the background. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Police secure a location after a shooting near the White House in Washington DC, U.S. May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
A U.S. Secret Service officer walks across a closed 17th Street near the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on a security alert after a shooting on a street outside. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People exit the White House grounds after a shooting incident in Washington DC, U.S. May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Secret Service agents stand guard after a shooting incident near the White House in Washington DC, U.S. May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
A uniformed Secret Service agent holds a shotgun after a shooting incident near the White House in Washington DC, U.S. May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
A Secret Service Police Officer stands outside of the guard entrance on 17th St Northwest near the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on a security alert after a shooting on a street outside. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
U.S. Secret Service officers are seen on Pennsylvania Avenue near the White House in Washington, Friday, May 20, 2016, after the White House was placed on a security alert after a shooting on a street outside. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
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A man who looked to be in his mid-20s walked to the gate of the White House holding a silver-colored gun pointed at the ground, said Brett Polivka, a 26-year-old visiting from Texas who was standing near the south side of the White House with his girlfriend.

"A couple officers drew their guns, went right at him and within two or three seconds we heard a gunshot," Polivka said, adding that he believed it was an officer's shot. They were then cleared from the scene, Polivka said.

The Secret Service confirmed a police involved shooting near the White House complex, reporting on Twitter that all the people under its protection were safe. The Secret Service also protects the president's family and other top dignitaries.

One person in critical condition was transported to hospital, said Oscar Mendez, a spokesman for the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department.

Lafayette Square, a park and near the White House, was closed to tourists. U.S. Park Police and a Secret Service officer with a police dog kept tourists on the sidewalk north of the park.

(Reporting by Megan Cassalla and Eric Walsh in Washington; additional reporting by Joseph Ax and Gina Cherelus in New York and Curtis Skinner in San Francisco; Writing by Daniel Trotta; Editing by Tom Brown)

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