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Motorist who entered White House grounds may seek evaluation by mental health experts

The Mitchellville, Md., man who was arrested earlier this month for driving his Honda Civic into the secure perimeter of the White House grounds is considering whether to seek an evaluation by mental health experts, his attorney said Wednesday.

During a brief appearance in D.C. Superior Court, Mathew Goldstein stood next to his newly hired attorney Thomas Hartnett, as Hartnett explained to a judge that his client was “discussing” whether to ask that his case be reviewed to determine whether he is eligible for mental health court.

Goldstein, 55, was arrested May 6 after Secret Service agents say he inadvertently followed the motorcade carrying President Obama’s daughters into the presidential compound. He was charged with misdemeanor unlawful entry.

Defendants found eligible for mental health court can ultimately have their charges dropped if they successfully complete all requirements of the court, according to the court’s Web site.

At the hearing, Hartnett also told Judge A. Franklin Burgess that he was hoping to “re-create” the drive his client took so he can better understand what happened. But to do so, Hartnett said, his client would have to seek a temporary release from the restriction that he was to stay away from the White House and its vicinity. Prosecutors added Hartnett would also have to get permission from Secret Service.

Hartnett also requested from prosecutors that they turn over all videotapes of the incident.

Goldstein’s next hearing is scheduled for July 2.

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