Prostitutes in Colombia and More Embarrassing Secret Service Moments (PHOTOS)

See photos from the alleged Colombia prostitutes scandal and other embarrassing Secret Service moments.

Eleven Secret Service agents were sent home from Colombia after officials allegedly discovered prostitutes in their hotel rooms. From the Monica Lewinsky scandal to the shoe attack on George W. Bush, see other embarrassing moments for the service over the years.

Fernando Llano / AP Photo

Colombian Prostitutes

President Obama’s trip to Colombia for the Summit of the Americas was virtually overshadowed when news broke that an advance team of agents had been sent home after officials discovered women believed to be prostitutes in their hotel rooms. At least 11 agents were placed on administrative leave and ordered to return to the United States. None of the agents actually was involved in guarding the president at any point in the trip, and White House officials insist he was never at risk. Obama said he would be “angry” if the reports turn out to be true.

Note: Agents pictured are arriving to replace those who had been sent home as a result of the scandal. 

Gerald Herbert / AP Photo

White House Party Crashers

Now Tareq and Michaele Salahi are in the news for their messy divorce, but there was a time when they were a happily married couple crashing a state dinner at the White House. They made it beyond three security checkpoints and even managed to shake hands with President Obama, even though neither of them had an invitation. The Secret Service had to deal with much of the fallout from this incident. Director Mark Sullivan said “human errors” had led to the security breach, but insisted the Salahis had to go through metal detectors along with all the other guests. The House Oversight and Government Reform committee launched an investigation into the incident centering on an “indictment of the human element of the Secret Service.”

AP Photo

George W. Bush Shoe Attack

President George W. Bush’s final visit to Iraq in December 2008 was interrupted when an Iraqi journalist threw a pair of shoes at him during a speech byt the president. The Secret Service faced extra scrutiny because the attacker was able to throw two shoes at the president, one at a time, and Bush was forced to dodge them both. Also, agents did not usher the president from the room. Of course, the Secret Service agents made it to Bush’s side within six seconds of the initial throwing, and the agency claims it followed all procedures during the incident.

Service vs. Fox News

The Secret Service sat up a Twitter account in May 2011, and within 10 days, the agency had sent out its first inappropriate tweet. Unlike with its usual tweets offering information on recruitment and news, somebody accidentally sent a very different style of message from the official Twitter account. “Had to monitor Fox for a story. Can’t. Deal. With. The. Blathering.” It was deleted soon after, but not before it had been retweeted and screen grabs had been taken. A spokesman explained in a statement, "An employee with access to the Secret Service's Twitter account, who mistakenly believed they were on their personal account, posted an unapproved and inappropriate tweet.”

AP Photo

Monica Lewinsky Scandal

The Monica Lewinsky scandal was not the Secret Service’s finest hour. According to grand jury testimony, agents often ignored certain standard rules when dealing with Lewinsky. One agent cleared a package that she had brought without checking its contents. "If she was going to do any harm to the president,” the agent said, “she would do something along the lines of Lorena Bobbitt and that I couldn't stop." Agents would also routinely place bets on how soon Bill Clinton would get to the Oval Office after Lewinsky had arrived. When the grand jury was convened, the Secret Service tried to keep its agents from testifying, saying doing so would erode the relationship between the president and the agents who needed to be near him. A judge eventually ruled against that argument and forced the agents to testify.

Heribert Proepper / AP Photo

Dangerous Pretzels

The Secret Service took some criticism in 2002 when President George W. Bush choked on a pretzel in his White House bedroom and was found by no one but his dogs. Since the president was in the private residence, there were no agents in the immediate vicinity. But the Secret Service soon announced that it would make no major rule changes as a result of the incident. Bush’s press secretary, Ari Fleischer, said, ''Unless somebody from security wants to crawl in bed with the president. There's really no way around it.''

Ron Edmonds / AP Photo

Reagan Assassination Attempt

Ronald Reagan may have survived John Hinckley’s assassination attempt against him, but that doesn’t mean the Secret Service didn’t find mistakes to correct in its aftermath. Magnetometers are seen at nearly every presidential event and agents don’t allow people to get so close to the president, unless they have been scanned beforehand. Wherever possible, tents are now frequently used to protect the president when he is entering and exiting a building.