BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A passenger in a vehicle that slammed into a barricade at the National Security Agency last week says the driver was his unlicensed 17-year-old friend who floored the gas when police approached him after he mistakenly took a restricted exit.
“He was panicking, telling me, ‘Oh, I made a wrong turn. I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what to do,’” said Javonte Brown, who was sleeping when the chaos startled him awake.
Brown says he let his teenage friend drive his rental because he and a friend traveling with them from Washington, D.C. to Maryland were tired.
He says his friend was using GPS when he accidentally made the wrong turn off the Baltimore-Washington Parkway.
Brown believes police went too far when they opened fire.
“Those was fatal shots they were shooting…If I didn’t grab him, throw him under the wheel, the man would’ve got killed,” Brown said.
Police say none of the injuries came from gunfire.
“Immediately, when I woke up, I knew where we was at. I recently worked there with a state contractor, so I knew we was on the base. So I’m asking him, ‘Why are you not stopping?’ By that time, we was already taking fire on the windshield,” Brown said.
The NSA, just south of Baltimore at Fort Meade, is one of the most heavily guarded facilities in the country. There have been several incidents in the past involving people who accidentally took the exit, including two people from Baltimore who were driving a stolen vehicle. Police shot both of them, one of which died.
“I accept full responsibility for putting him behind the wheel,” Brown said of the incident with his friend.
All three have been released from custody, and no criminal charges have been filed.
“They could have came at him, approached him differently and just told him to make a U-turn,” Brown said. “I don’t know how they let him on the gate. It was something they did wrong. Somebody wasn’t doing their job.”
The FBI is leading the investigation into the incident and told WJZ they had no further updates to publicly share on the case and did not comment on Brown’s accusations.
The FBI says there are no apparent links to terrorism.