DHS launches criminal investigation of Secret Service over Jan. 6 text purge

DHS launches criminal investigation of Secret Service over Jan. 6 text purge

July 21, 2022 0 By Ellen Novack

WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Secret Service Agents stand watch as abortion rights protesters gather at the White House to denounce the U.S. Supreme Court decision to end federal abortion rights protections on June 26, 2022 in Washington, DC. The Supreme Court's decision in the Dobbs v Jackson Women's Health overturned the landmark 50-year-old Roe v Wade case.  (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

One week ago, the DHS inspector general Joseph Cuffari informed members of the House select committee on Jan. 6 that the Secret Service had improperly deleted text messages for the dates surrounding the attempted coup. A spokesperson for the Secret Service promptly responded by calling the inspector general a liar, saying that while “data resident on some phones” was lost as part of a “pre-planned system migration,” it wasn’t as if anything had been deleted.

In fact, said the spokesperson, “none of the texts [the inspector general’s office] was seeking had been lost in the migration.” That statement came exactly two days before the Secret Service informed the select committee that, whoops, it had no texts to provide. Except, somehow, for exactly one from former Capitol Police chief Steven Sund.

All of which makes it seems like the Secret Service deliberately purged its text messages from the period, then lied about purging them. Spokesperson Anthony Guglielmi also appears to have lied when he claimed that the Secret Service deleted those text messages before it had any idea there was a reason to keep them, as Congress ordered the preservation of those records ten days after the assault on the Capitol.

With all that, it’s not a huge surprise that NBC News is reporting DHS has opened a criminal investigation into the Secret Service.



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