February 26th, 2009
07:34 AM ET
13 years ago

White House menace caught

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/06/art.racoon.gi.jpg caption=" One large raccoon and several smaller ones had invaded the White House grounds. "](CNN) - After weeks on the run, officials have nabbed a fugitive who infiltrated White House grounds: on Wednesday, they announced the capture of one of the raccoons raising mayhem around the executive mansion over the last month.

White House spokesman Bill Burton confirms the National Park Service has captured at least one of the particularly ambitious mammals and released it safely in an "undisclosed location."

The pesky intruders were first spotted roaming the premises early this month, and have since proved to be a repeated nuisance for National Park Service officials charged with maintaining the White House grounds.

The matter even made its way to one of the White House daily briefings with reporters, when Press Secretary Robert Gibbs acknowledged the difficulty officials were having in catching the animals.
Several traps were set up around the White House lawn in early February after it was determined that one large raccoon and several smaller ones were the chief mischief doers.

The traps had included peanut butter and apples as bait, but it was ultimately salmon that did the trick, Burton said.

Filed under: White House
soundoff (156 Responses)
  1. Rob

    I thought that maybe Cheney got back in somehow . . . .

    February 26, 2009 08:38 am at 8:38 am |
  2. Scott, Tucson

    Well at least the racoons wears a mask whereas our politicians are stealing us blind, so who' s the greater menace?

    February 26, 2009 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  3. republicans hate america

    Oh dear i thought for a minute there it was John McCain thinking he won the election

    February 26, 2009 08:41 am at 8:41 am |
  4. Sharon

    Of course they were there because Barney and Mrs. Beasley left. But now that the Obamas will be getting a dog in April there will be no more pesky critters.

    February 26, 2009 08:42 am at 8:42 am |
  5. rs nc

    Apparently even Raccoons know its not safe to eat peanut butter anymore...

    February 26, 2009 08:43 am at 8:43 am |
  6. Linda in MS

    I'm glad they removed the little guy to safety, where he belongs. I had two very friendly racoons who were born in the attic of my house after Katrina, and I watched them grow up. My husband would feed them peanuts right from his hand. they followed us around like dogs, and we even observed them playing with objects much like a dog. They have moved on now, and I miss them.

    February 26, 2009 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  7. steve

    You must be really bored.

    February 26, 2009 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  8. Tom

    Good job to the park service – now give them a chance to get bin laden

    February 26, 2009 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  9. hildutus

    Great story to start out the political ticker! The implications of this one should no doubt be international in scope! Incisive! Brilliant! Thank you so much for allowing us to comment on this story above all others!

    February 26, 2009 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  10. still hoping

    I think the menace is still loose in the White House.

    February 26, 2009 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  11. carlo

    For all of you people who feel sorry for this racoon, take it from someone from the South, were these creatures are abundant, they will destroy everything in their path, kill any dog you have, and try to kill you. They are vicious and dangerous.

    February 26, 2009 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  12. does that racoon look a little like Sharpton?

    is that racist?

    people can resemble animals

    certainly Sharpton's behavior resembles some animals

    February 26, 2009 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  13. hateYT

    Why not, plenty in there already.

    February 26, 2009 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  14. bill

    They sent the raccoon to Gitmo

    February 26, 2009 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  15. beckster

    This is what happens when you leave trash laying around. Not to hard to figure out what is going on in the new White House.

    February 26, 2009 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  16. roy

    Didn't those 'Undisclosed Locations' get Bush into trouble?

    February 26, 2009 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  17. J.D.

    He was just looking for his share of the stimulus package.

    February 26, 2009 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  18. Greg Pottstown, Pa.

    Talk about a waste of money!!!!!! A bullet costs about 10 cents add some table scraps and you would have taken care of this problem without wasting the taxpayers money.

    February 26, 2009 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  19. Shari, NY

    The racoon probably heard the news about tainted peanuts so he went for the salmon.

    February 26, 2009 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  20. Jay

    It's not news... it's CNN.

    February 26, 2009 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  21. gary, gpp

    Sarah Palin is an idiot.

    February 26, 2009 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  22. Jacqueline in Cameron,Missouri

    It is nice that they let it loose. We caught a Possum in our yard, called the Conservation Dept. and when we came home we found the crate door open, no Possum inside, but blood splattered everywhere.....the next time we catch one, we are taking it to the State Park. We did not want the Possum, but they tend to NOT carry Rabies and they play Possum....so not dangerous, just a nuisance, it was killed unfairly.

    February 26, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  23. JP

    Please CNN... stop the cosmetic ads that appear like strobe lights. The constant brush strokes distracts from reading... and that's not so good for people with history of seizure. How can one concentrate and read and understand when the brushes keep moving back and forth?

    February 26, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  24. Angela Wynnhurst

    Those are just CIA agents undercover.

    February 26, 2009 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  25. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    They caught Gingrich, now to catch Lott!!!

    February 26, 2009 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
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