Jan 6 riots: DHS writes to Secret Service on deleted text messages
- The US DHS is probing text messages related to the Jan 6 attack
- DHS has called on the Secret Service to stop any probe into texts
- The texts have been sought by the House select committee probing Capitol riots
The inspector general of the United States’ Department of Homeland Security told the Secret Service that it is investigating text messages related to the January 6 attack on the US Capitol. The inspector general’s office said that texts might have been deleted and described discovering these texts part of an “ongoing criminal investigation,” according to a letter reviewed by CNN.
In a letter to DHS Deputy Inspector General Gladys Ayala wrote to Secret Service Director James Murray, Ayala said, “This is to notify you that the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General has an ongoing investigation into the facts and circumstances surrounding the collection and preservation of evidence by the United States Secret Service as it related to the events of January 6, 2021.”
“To ensure the integrity of our investigation, the USSS must not engage in any further investigative activities regarding the collection and preservation of the evidence referenced above. This includes immediately refraining from interviewing potential witnesses, collecting devices or taking any other action that would interfere with an ongoing criminal investigation.”
The letter indicates the growing tension between the Secret Service and the DHS inspector general over potentially missing text messages. The messages are being sought by the House select committee probing former President Donald Trump’s role in the January 6 riots.
The DHS inspector general wrote that the Secret Service should explain interviews taken related to text messages related to text messages, along with the “scope off the questioning, and what, if any, warnings were given to the witness(es).” The Secret Service acknowledged having received the inspector general’s letter.
“We have 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 said in a statement.