The Dept. of Internal Security is investigating the conduct of the Secret Service which deleted vital text messages sent on January 6, the day of the Capitol riots. Messages from that day and the day before will be released to the Select Committee investigating the insurrection by Trump supporters instigated by the former President.
Committee member and Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren said that the committee was shocked to receive a letter from the Inspector General of Homeland Security stating that messages have been deleted that would have been vital to the investigation.
Lofgren said that all the texts would be necessary to move ahead with the investigation. The Secret Service has been changing accounts on how the messages came to be deleted, the Inspector General told the select committee during a briefing.
Secret Service Stonewalling Investigations
While the protective body initially blamed software upgrades for the erasures, they changed tack and later said that the messages were deleted during device replacements.
The Inspector General also alleged that the Secret Service stonewalled attempts at an in-depth investigation after initially agreeing to the review of the agency’s response to the insurrection and the events surrounding the riots.
The Secret Service obstructed the investigation by slowing down the production of events. Realizing the enormity of the act, the panel has moved to subpoena the Secret Service.
The disclosure of the erasure of messages by the body has turned into a top priority for the Select Committee as it investigates how the events unfolded on that fateful day.
The texts are particularly significant as they will shed light on the attempts by Trump to visit the rioting site and the steps taken by the Secret Service to prevent the then-president from doing so. He wanted to remove vice-president Mike Pence from the Capitol complex as he refused to go along with Trump to overturn the results of the presidential elections.