Alleged White House Crasher Carlos Allen: 'I Got an Actual Invite in the Mail'

Carlos Allen, in a "GMA" exclusive, said he was turned away at two gates.

ByABC News via logo
January 10, 2010, 8:12 PM

Jan. 11, 2010— -- The alleged third White House gate crasher said a generic invitation to the state dinner and his acceptance at the door are all the proof he needs that his attendance was warranted.

In an exclusive interview with "Good Morning America" today,Carlos Allen weaved a complicated tale of how he wound up at the White House including how he was turned away at two gates, but later caught a ride with an Indian delegation.

"I was invited," he told "GMA" anchor Robin Roberts, who was seated at Allen's table during the Nov. 24 gala in honor of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. "I got an actual invite in the mail."

Yet a copy of the invitation Allen provided to ABC News came without an official envelope or any documents bearing his name. Allen also confirmed that he did not have a placecard once at the dinner and was seated after asking a White House official for direction.

Allen admitted he had repeatedly denied attending the dinner shortly after he was identified as a possible crasher, but said he did so to distance himself from the media frenzy surrounding crashers Tareq and Michaele Salahi.

"I never denied to the Secret Service that I was there," Allen said. "When individuals who were calling me and said 'Were you at the White House,' I didn't know these people who were calling me and asking me questions."

Allen said he also initially denied attending the dinner out of respect for President Obama.

"I did not want to embarrass my president," he said. " I did not want to embarrass my administration. I did not want to embarrass my country."

A federal grand jury has been convened to hear witness testimony in the Salahis' case, but the investigation into Allen's attedance has so far been limited to interviews.

Allen's attorney, A. Scott Bolden, told "Good Morning America" that just the actions of White House officials who accepted Allen into the gates and showed him where to sit made his client an invitee.

"It doesn't sound like Carlos Allen is a criminal trespasser," he said. "It sounds like he's an invitee and that's our position."