Probe: No evidence of widespread misconduct by Secret Service agents
WASHINGTON — Investigators reviewing allegations of misbehavior by Secret Service agents tasked with safeguarding the President and other top administration officials found no evidence that “misconduct is widespread” or that the agency’s leadership “tolerates inappropriate behavior.”
However, the investigation by the Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general, launched after several agents were caught in 2012 with Colombian prostitutes, identified a handful of other cases in which a Secret Service employee paid for sex, including one earlier this year.
The investigation also found 824 other incidents over the last nine years, ranging from offenses such as “sleeping on the job” to “drugs and alcohol.” It found one employee whose security clearance was suspended 195 times for misconduct.
The report released Friday said the vast number of the 6,500 Secret Service employees “do not frequently engage in behavior that causes a security concern.”
The April 2012 incident in Cartagena, Colombia, occurred as agents were preparing for a visit there by President Barack Obama. Six employees ultimately resigned or retired, and four others had their security clearance revoked and were removed from the agency.
The Inspector General’s Office also surveyed 2,575 employees and found that 83 percent said they were not aware of employees engaging in similar misbehavior. In addition, 61 percent said they believe that management does not tolerate misconduct.