Department of Homeland Security watchdog opens criminal investigation into Secret Service amid January 6 cover-up allegations

The Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general has opened a criminal probe of the Secret Service as Democrats accuse the agency of covering up details of the Capitol riot.

The January 6th committee learned from the DHS watchdog last week that Secret Service texts disappeared during a “device replacement.”

DHS watchdog opens probe of Secret Service

The decision to open a criminal probe comes after the Washington Post reported that the DHS watchdog knew about the missing texts in February and planned at one point to make a public alert that Secret Service was obstructing requests for records, but never did. The Secret Service is part of DHS.

In what appears to be a response to pressure from critics, the DHS watchdog is now taking control of the Secret Service’s inquiry into the missing messages.

The Secret Service said they “informed the January 6th Select Committee of the Inspector General’s request and will conduct a thorough legal review to ensure we are fully cooperative with all oversight efforts and that they do not conflict with each other.”

The Secret Service denies having “maliciously deleted text messages,” but the January 6th committee has raised speculation of a cover-up that violated federal record-keeping laws. Secret Service has turned over a single text.

“I smell a rat,” committee member Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) said.

Secret Service becomes target for J6 committee

Secret Service has come to President Trump’s defense against a sensational account given by Cassidy Hutchinson, the star witness of the January 6th committee hearings, claiming that he struggled with his bodyguards in an attempt to drive to the Capitol.

The crackdown on Secret Service is the latest show of force in the Biden administration’s response to January 6th, which has seen the Justice Department put the screws on Trump allies against the backdrop of televised hearings painting the former president as a threat to democracy.

Democrats have ramped up calls to imprison Trump, a former president who received 73 million votes in 2020. Trump has fought sweeping requests from the Democrat-controlled January 6th committee for sensitive White House records, citing executive privilege.

Steve Bannon, who is facing jail time for failing to cooperate with the committee, thundered against the “illegitimate” Biden White House earlier this week as his trial for contempt of Congress began.

Bannon rested his case without calling any witnesses Thursday, hours before the January 6th committee’s final, primetime hearing.

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