A quiet evening in Wilmington was disrupted by a sudden collision involving President Joe Biden's motorcade.
A car striking an SUV part of President Joe Biden's motorcade led to DUI and inattentive driving charges for the driver.
At approximately 8:09 PM on Sunday, Wilmington, Delaware, was swept by heavy rainfall when the incident occurred. President Biden was in the city, engaging with campaign personnel during a holiday event. The sound of the collision resonated while Biden shared insights on poll statistics with members of the press.
Photographers at the scene captured images of a visibly shocked Biden as the crash's impact rang out. In a swift response, Secret Service agents escorted the President and his wife, Jill Biden, into another vehicle. The collision, near Biden's campaign headquarters, involved another car colliding with an SUV that was part of the motorcade.
No injuries were reported in the aftermath of the accident. Both vehicles involved were confirmed to have sustained damage. The driver of the car, James Cooper, 46, faced serious consequences for his actions leading to the incident.
David Karas, a spokesperson for the Wilmington Police, provided clarity on the situation. "Wilmington Police have determined that this was an accidental collision and have charged the driver," he said, indicating that charges had been filed against Cooper.
Following the collision, Cooper found himself surrounded by Secret Service agents, with their weapons drawn as a precaution. Images from the scene show Cooper inside his damaged car, window rolled down, hands raised in surrender. This response underscores the promptness and seriousness with which the Secret Service reacts to any potential threat to the President's safety.
"There was a loud bang," a White House pool report said Sunday night, describing the startling moment of the crash, "and POTUS was standing outside the vehicle with a surprised expression on his face."
The incident did not halt the President's schedule despite the unexpected event. Following a thorough assessment by his security detail, Biden could return home without any further interruptions.
Cooper now faces charges of driving under the influence and inattentive driving. The Secret Service's swift intervention ensured that a potentially dangerous situation was contained quickly and effectively. In the moments following the crash, the area was secured, and Cooper was apprehended without further risk to the public or the President.
Biden's time in Delaware that Sunday was intended to be a cordial visit with campaign staff during a holiday gathering. Before the crash occurred, he was actively engaging with the press, discussing the current state of poll numbers. This incident illustrates the unpredictability of circumstances that can arise even during routine engagements for political figures.
Agents acted with precision to safeguard Biden, moving him away from the scene to another SUV. The professionalism and rapid response by the Secret Service agents at the scene ensured that the President and First Lady were kept out of harm’s way.
Although alarming, the incident was efficiently managed and served as a reminder of the constant risks public figures face and their security details. The rapid and effective response by the Secret Service ensured no harm came to the President or the First Lady. The driver, James Cooper, will now face the legal consequences of his actions.