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Jan 6 Capitol Riot Committee subpoenas Secret Service for missing text

#Jan #Capitol #Riot #Committee #subpoenas #Secret #Service #missing #text

The US House of Representatives committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol said late Friday night it had subpoenaed the Secret Service over questions about missing text messages from the days surrounding last year’s riot.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General Joseph Cuffari told Congress earlier this week that since Jan. 5 his office has had trouble obtaining records of text messages from the Secret Service, the law enforcement agency that protects the President 6, 2021.

Representative Bennie Thompson, chairman of the Jan. 6 committee, informed agency director James Murray in a letter Friday about the subpoena, which forced the Secret Service to turn over the missing papers by Tuesday.

“The Special Committee is seeking the relevant text messages, as well as action reports, released across all departments of the USSS that relate to or are in any way related to the events of January 6, 2021,” said the letter, which was sent to the Committee website, said.

The messages could be important amid House and Justice Department investigations into whether Donald Trump and his close advisers encouraged the deadly uprising of the former president’s supporters aimed at preventing his Democratic rival Joe Biden from being certified as the winner of November’s election 2020

Secret Service agents were with Trump on the day of the riot and also with Vice President Mike Pence, who was in hiding in the Capitol after pro-Trump rioters called for his hanging.

On June 29, a former White House staffer told the January 6 House Inquiry that Trump was trying to force the Secret Service to take him to the Capitol that day to join his supporters.

According to Secret Service spokesman Anthony Guglielmi, the agents’ phones were wiped as part of a planned backup program that began before the DHS Office of the Inspector General (OIG) first asked for the data six weeks after the riot.

“The Secret Service notified the DHS OIG of the loss of certain phone data, but confirmed to the OIG that none of the requested text was lost in the migration,” he said in a statement.

The intelligence agency has been criticized for failing to adequately anticipate the threat posed by the violent action by armed Trump supporters on Jan. 6.

At the time, Trump had appointed a senior intelligence official, Tony Ornato, as his personal deputy chief of staff.

Ornato has denied former Trump aide Cassidy Hutchinson’s report to the committee Jan. 6 that Trump tried to force the Secret Service to drive him to the Capitol as his supporters gathered inside the building, the seat of the US Legislature .

But officials other than White House officials have supported Hutchinson’s story.

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