Skip to main content

tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  May 18, 2015 10:30am-12:31pm EDT

10:30 am
military. their exclusive legal protection for retaliation in a professional context of the military whistleblower act. that act as protecting zero survivors who experienced retaliation after reporting assaults. dod surveys indicate 32% of people who reported sexual assault experienced professional retaliation. using the figure between 2004 and 2013 we expected to see about 5700 people who may have had professional retaliation that could have been the subject of complaints at the inspector general which oversees the whistleblower protection investigation. over the same time period, the department of defense inspector general has a record of 38 complains of which five were investigated and none of which resulted in any relief for the victims who reported the
10:31 am
assault. as it is right now are a dead end. servicemembers could also go to the board of directors and seek relief for an injustice for their record directly if they like. the administrative bodies designated in the branches to correct any injustice to servicemember records we analyzed 18 years of those records publicly available and we found 51 sexual assault survivors who had even gotten partial relief from the board of correction. i was also surprising was over the same time. maybe you perpetrators had received correction to their military record. we found four times as many perpetrators actually go to the board to have them correct did and this is the case even though
10:32 am
victims are far more likely to experience administrative actions that require corrections. then perpetrators are. the other important piece of this is holding the people who retaliate to accounts and despite requests to many sources, we were unable to uncover information with the people against survivors are held accountable in any way. we found four instances of any action taken at all to investigations which have been opened in retaliation, neither of which resulted in punishment for the person doing the retaliation in two cases in which people who harassed and abused the victim were given extra physical training or extra duty and one of those instances was 15 years ago. the military has told to discipline people are behaving
10:33 am
improperly. we believe there is a need to be utilizing the people committing retaliation instead of against the victims. reality is very few people seek justice for these crimes in general but in the military the retaliation is a problem that affects most people who come forward without addressing that as megan and others have said the overarching problem of assaults can't be effectively addressed. at a minimum going forward what we would like to see is the military whistleblower protection act strengthened to be a meaningful legal survivor to at least provide the same level of protection as civilian dad who are designated as whistleblowers and to give his son inspector general to
10:34 am
recommend disciplinary action in the victims themselves can request disciplinary action as part of their relief and the legal justice at the 2015th is in fact we believe will encompass the suggestions we would like to see going forward to improve the legal protection and we see collateral charges for ms. conda that constitute the attention of the military as a result of someone reporting assaults taken off the table as a potential source of punishment. one of the things we found as many people are afraid to report because at the time of the assault them and engage in conduct that is illegal such as underage drinking or fraternization or adultery and that is one of the major barriers for people to come
10:35 am
forward. the military says they rarely punish people for this infraction and that is also the custom in the civilian world. it is more important to punish people for the more serious offense that section will assault and for other minor infractions that might happen at the same time. we found people were punished for these collateral misconducts that came to the attention of the military during a report of a sexual assault and even if punishment is minor reprimand or slap on the wrist, that can be devastating to someone's devastating to some of his career at a time when it is done dating and can be an excuse to not reenlist someone. that is the other area which would like to see legislative action and otherwise dod has taken important steps in improving how it handles sexual assault cases including creation of special victims council and we would like to expand capacities to include
10:36 am
retaliation in addition to the criminal justice system. with back we are happy to take any questions you might have. if not i wanted to say we have a number of survivors here in the room in addition to on the panel, some of whom are active duty and cannot be identified but are willing to share their stories with people. we have others who are also willing to speak even with their identity revealed. we have maria mcfarland in the front row who was available for spanish-speaking questions and interviews and i think -- do we have terry? and terry is here for a different reason. they have put together a petition of 130 platforms -- 130,000 signatures with respect
10:37 am
to the mj i and they are happy to speak if anybody has any questions after this. yes. >> i'm with the stars and stripes. do you take a position on the ability of commanders to overturn verdicts in the case? >> article lx was amended two years ago to make it more difficult for commanders to overturn a verdict. they still have control over the entire prosecutorial process analogies speak for protector defenders. the position as long as commanders have the authority to say which cases will go to trial in which cases will be prosecuted, that contributes and undermines unit cohesion and
10:38 am
encourages people to take sides and inject bias into the process wherein said there should be a more object to an impartial system of play. >> 's steve lucy with military times. there's a lot of what has been described as staff that is ingrained in the culture it seems. please thought out some ideas you all had for how to stop retaliation. how should the military go about changing the culture there might allow this to happen. >> it is a difficult question and it will take time. the key is for them to demonstrate. some of this is beginning to be done or will be done. to start training at the very
10:39 am
above the level of what to expect and how to treat people. ultimately, the key will be showing through action and the retaliatory behavior will not be tolerated. disciplining in any form or reprimanding people who are abusive towards the dems will start to create a culture in which it is understood that is not acceptable. that is the key in terms of the first that. >> we also think it is very important that the military educated semi-commanders about the consequences of trauma and the behaviors they may observe in people who have reported assault. we know often people say they're very much again sure in three and will stand behind victims all the way, but confronted biases creep in and people make
10:40 am
judgments about behavior of the individual that is involved or question why is it might have continued to work alongside someone that assaulted them to continued to correspond or something like that and that can be completely consistent with having been assaulted. taking on that piece of people recognize the realities of sexual assault and a highly support someone is very important. >> hi amy quinn. i am a survivor. my question is what are we looking towards having the people that allow these things to go on. when is it going to follow the record? how can we start make this followed a career. >> that is a good question. i know why you are asking.
10:41 am
is one of the things is the legal justice reservist members that is to be able to hold accountable leaders who knew or should have known in to take action. that is one of the expanded definition of prohibited personnel practices in the proposed law that might be helpful in terms of putting responsibility to ensure this behavior doesn't happen. if there is disciplinary action, if there is a move towards holding people accountable in the to be done in a transparent way so people can see across branches not being tolerated and that it will have an impact on the record going forward and i will be a very important part of it.
10:42 am
>> thank you. whistleblowers have a tough road ahead. anything going on i cannot then review dismissal as opposed to honorary discharge or like five years from now and hopefully we've made better strides in the area. >> you have given us a good lead-in to our next report. we have actually -- there is the review process. there's a whole problem of people wrongfully discharged particularly in the mental health discharges. other kinds of discharges as well related to trauma stemming from sexual assault they resulted in bad discharges they can be stigmatizing and inhibit peoples ability from getting the benefit they need and also
10:43 am
certain types of jobs. it is a huge problem for people who have had bad paper discharges and those remedies to go to the correction of military records and was found most if not all have been helpful. the whistleblower is more protective of active service members who feel they've experienced retaliation after reporting the focus of this report which also relied on active service members and people at the variances from the past few years whereas our next report will look further back at what happened to people who have bad discharges and how difficult it is to remedy that. >> hi, terry young. i think one of the things we see
10:44 am
a lot of is that people do not understand -- military members do not understand that their dede 214 cents. that is probably an area that needs to be addressed because there's codes on their end unless you know what those are you have no way to do anything about them. for example, there is an article not very long ago about the secret codes and my husband and i were scrambling to look at what they are. so i think that in some thing that probably needs to be addressed. >> thank you. that is true. we found that in our research. people didn't understand necessarily what the discharge meant until after the fact it was too late.
10:45 am
that can be devastating. one of our recommendations is to have a special victims council during the discharge process said they are ensure their rights are dead. for people in the midst of a trauma might be so anxious to get out of the service to any discharge. if it means they can get out as quickly as possible. without understanding the repercussions. if there are many more questions, thank you for coming. we will be available afterwards. sound a sound a --
10:46 am
10:47 am
>> just one more week for the house and senate go up for their memorial day break. genuineness for a look at the last week i had is to learn french congressional reporter with "politico." today.month ahead. it featured actor in the highway trust fund. the house passed its bill dealing with the patriot with the patriot act with the patriot act, and as a renewing provisions. what is the status of the legislation in the senate? >> that is more complicated than it was in the house. passed with an overwhelming number but that legislation is not being picked up in the senate. mitch mcconnell wants a clean reauthorization of the patriot act. the program is notably known because of edwards snowed in --
10:48 am
and the release event in the full collection of data who want to see that freedom might or put it on the floor instead of an extension of the patriot act. mcconnell and senator rand paul find themselves on opposite sides of the issue. >> senator brandes paul -- rand paul said he would filibuster if would filibuster if he put up a clean patriot act. he's worried about privacy concerns without war and for proper notification. he will filibuster the bill as it comes onto the floor. mitch mcconnell pushing heavily on republicans to supply votes needed for a clean reauthorization to move onto other deadlines. >> let's turn now to the highway trust fund raising a deadline. democrat tom carter dealing with the bill calling for a two-month extension says today senator boxer and i are against
10:49 am
the bill to compel congress to fix the trust fund the summer. what is the status of the funding for the short and long-term? >> funding will run now. current authorization for the trust fund and the end of the month and lawmakers on mr. deadline with the construction season. there needs to be money available to keep the projects going forward in building. so what is happening in the senate and house a two-month extension of the authorization to give lawmakers more time to figure out how to pay for a long-term extension. everyone involved was a five-year extension of the highway trust fund. the question of the sticking point is how to pay for it. democrats advocate for increasing the gas tax but that's not a popular proposal from republicans. >> moving forward with trade promotion authority watching the stars and the trade next week.
10:50 am
what can we expect and will the senate finish this by the end of the next week when they're supposed to be out. >> you can expect a contentious week in a lesser extent to the trade promotion authority. you will see democrats some democrats went with senator reid earlier this week to stop it from going forward until there is currency debate another dose considered. now that it's on the floor, you see democrats win against fast-track authority in the columns they have with the transpacific partnership come in the larger trade deal and there's no guarantee traded stowaways. they might not get to it. they might not vote on it or might not pass. of course if it does pass it is much more uncertain.
10:51 am
>> affecting the transpacific partnership is about let's move on to secretary of state hillary clinton's supposed to testify before ben ghazi as early as next day. the chair of the flex committee says he's not going to allow her to testify until certain documents are turned over. what is happening here? >> really flipping the switch and turning away from hillary clinton onto john kerry her predecessor at the state department. what he is saying this about these documents, they requested a letter and subpoena over the last year. he can't have hillary clinton testify because he does not the evidence he needs. she's insisting she will only appear one time. but here she comes in and the new evidence comes out when it documents are made available. it will not miss the opportunity to question her. without all this document she will be appearing in trying to
10:52 am
amp up pressure on the obama administration to get the document they been waiting for for six months. >> thanks for the update. we'll follow you on twitter your handlers at times lauren french. >> thank you so much.
10:53 am
>> section 215 authorizes the meta-data collection, the bulk collection or insensibly authorizes. last week we found out the federal court only as suggested in a mosh and died at the act never authorize these programs. the nsa would tell you these programs were authorized by section 215 and the fisa court proceeded to write a word that covers every american. our founding fathers would be appalled. >> i think our policy is far from it today. we have policies woefully out of date. we have copyright policy from
10:54 am
1976. a lot has changed since 1976. we have the electronic communications privacy act in 1986. started working on e-mail in 1989 when you can send an e-mail to someone else they work with. now we have a standard form of communication and yet we still have a situation where a piece of paper in your desk or are as to a war is standard. one force that would need a warrant to access the information. an e-mail that is not subject to a warrant standard. >> the issue the sec brought out as we are not making a comment. what we are saying is that is open and free needs to be some pain anytime the government gets involved there's an open-ended pandora box. in the judiciary committee we had hearings and we can't answer basic questions about what their
10:55 am
own roles do. we simply say at this point let that be an issue for congress. it is on the radar, but not being put in place by bureaucrats who have no consequence from the elected populist. >> a new report found two senior secret agents more likely than not impaired by alcohol when they drove into a white house barricade in march. [inaudible conversations] the committee on oversight and government reform will come to order. but that objection shares authorized to declare recess at any time.
10:56 am
i'm meeting today to talk about the united states secret service and accountability for the 2015 and then. march 14th, 2 senior secret service special agent one has the title of deputy special agent in charge. the presidential project in detail, mr. connolly on the other title ii the special agent in charge. that would be mr. george ogilvie. the allegation and the concern was they drove through criminal scene investigation of a potential bomb at the white house. following the incident there were allegations the two agents were intoxicated after being at a bar downtown for a retirement party. most concerned with the allegation neither nature was given a sobriety test nor were they reprimanded in any way. part of the concern was what happened in the bomb scene and
10:57 am
what did they do about it? when did they know and how did they reported that the chain of command? it said everyone involved was told to go home and pretend like nothing happened. to get a better sense of what happened, ranking member comments and i ranking member coming for nine of the secret service director clancy peered director clancy cannot answer questions. next we scheduled a public hearing and the direct or said he could not answer the question. instead he deferred to the department of homeland security office in specter general who was investigating the matter. the investigation is now complete and we are pleased to have mr. ross here today to talk about the conclusion of that investigation. now the facts are in this time for accountability. they determined it more likely than not was impaired by alcohol. this abiding test wasn't given to me the region the night of march 4th to the inspector
10:58 am
general came to the conclusion based on these facts. these included both calmly and ogilvie spent five hours in a bar for minibar tab that included 14 drinks after two hours of open bar. the objective behavior of the two experienced secret service agents who should have known better. the agents impair judgment resulted and i'm driving and i quote, into a crime scene and just from what the rest of the secret service is treated as a potential at as a device in which under different circumstances -- when he read the quote again. sorry for the disruption. the agents impair judgment resulted in them driving into what i quote from the report into a crime scene and just from what the rest of the secret service is treated as a potential explosive device in which under different circumstances could have been nature of their own lives and
10:59 am
those of the uniformed division officers responding. end quote. if that had been true come in these asian would have been lucky to be alive. they are endangering the lives of too many people by doing what they had done. following the incident to make its way up the chain of command where it eventually reached mr. connolly himself. are required to report what happened, mr. connolly chose not to. mr. kohn l-lima with his, special agent in charge on march 6 to talk about the sufficient package incident. but they made no mention of being involved with the incident. mr. ogilvie likewise had a duty to self report and chose not to inspector general found their failure to report reflects poor judgment or an affirmative desire to hide activity. relying on the reporting and
11:00 am
egregious misconduct does not work when agents do not act honorably. ..
11:01 am
is one of the ongoing concerns a deep-seated cultural problems within the secret service are pervasive and they continue. where thousands of good men and women who served his country honorably and patriotically. we appreciate them. but they are not above the law. the secret service has to abide by the law as well. we've heard over and over again the source of morale problems within the secret service is that senior personnel are treated differently from the rank and file. the uniform division is treated differently from the agents. we have little doubt that because of this disparate treatment calmly at ogilvie believe they could act in way which would be able to get away with it. culture of special treatment for senior agents must stop. it's an embarrassing highly concerning pattern of misconduct in security incidents that need to end. the secret service mission is to import. i want to commend mr. roth and his team for the good work on this report.
11:02 am
acted swiftly, but a lot of people towards it and it does produce a very worthwhile result in that's why we are here today. we look forward to cheering from director clancy on this incident and learn whether the agency plans to take disciplinary action against the individuals involved. i have a concern just retiring for stepping aside doesn't solve the problem. that they don't truly have the consequences that would be associated with such egregious behavior. the job of the secret service is too important not to reprimand those who exercise shockingly poor judgment which could put the president and his family at risk. one of the other things were going to explore is how within the department of homeland security that are different tables of penalties within the department itself. mothers instead of for the department of homeland security there seems to be a different standard within the secret service and other agencies themselves and get this is the very reason we formed one of the reasons reform the department of
11:03 am
homeland security is to make sure that they got best practices and management together so they could have is uniform across but it's not. one of the things the inspector general found is even the most senior people didn't understand what the alcohol policy was. sort of an important thing to do. certainly an important thing to understand. we appreciate the good work of mr. roth and look forward to a good vibrant discussion about his findings. without i want to recognize the ranking member, mr. cummings for five minutes. >> thank you mr. chairman. i want to thank you, general roth and jerking for all your -- and your team for all your hard work. you've worked with us and met with us and we took your guidance and really appreciate all that you all have done. you all started immediately after receiving these allegations on march 12. a week after the incident and
11:04 am
finish them in less than eight weeks. that says a lot. in that time they conducted an impressive 48 interviews and obtained a wide variety of documents and other materials. the report released by the inspector general confirmed key allegations, such as the claim that the qa teams, mr. connolly and mr. ogilvie in fact had been drinking it for driving a government vehicle to the white house and then driving better government vehicle home. the report also debunks other allegations. it includes, for example, that there is, i quote, no evidence that the video of the incident was intentionally deleted or destroyed. this was a model of how an investigation should be conducted, and it demonstrates why congress and this committee
11:05 am
in particular relies so held on the work by our igs. unfortunately this report makes clear that there is still much work to be done to improve the culture at the secret service. at a previous hearing in september 30 of last year, i expressed great concern with the secret service culture that seems to punish those who raise concerns. a culture which employees are afraid to report incidents up the chain of command at the time were discussing an incident in 2011 when multiple shots were fired at the white house. one officer on the teen believed bullets had hit the white house but she feared the consequences of disputing her superiors as a result it was not discovered until four days later that the white house had been struck seven times.
11:06 am
the inspector general's report indicates that this cultural problem is indeed widespread. for example, the report highlights and i quote the secret service reputation for punishing or ignoring those who would further investigate or report such violations. according to the inspector general support some officers relayed that the watch commander at the scene on the night of the incident raised concerns. according to one officer the watch commander told his colleagues that the agents who drove into the barricade work and i quote hammered. according to the officer, however, the watch commander instead ordering a sobriety test would have been come and i quote, a career killer. therefore no sobriety test was done.
11:07 am
both agents drove their vehicles home after a night of drinking. the inspector general's report concludes come and i quote, the watch commander's actions must be considered in light of the vast disparity between the watch command and colleagues who was in the watch commander's chain ofof command, end of corporate am also extremely concerned because just two days ago our committee conducted i.t. interview that further corroborates this view. committee staff interviewed alphonso dyson, the deputy chief of the uniform division, who manages more than 600 officers. mr. dyson admitted to our committee staff that he had two telephone calls with mr. connolly on the night of the incident. one of mr. connolly was in the middle of -- at another as mr. connolly was driving home later that night. in those calls mr. dyson warned
11:08 am
mr. connolly at the watch commander, and i quote was going to make it a problem, end of quote. mr. dyson also admitted and he told mr. connolly at the watch commander might cause trouble for him. mr. dyson stated, ethical, he was going to stir the pot. he was going to spread the rumor. he was going to get the guys riled up. that's what i believed. that's what i relayed to dsaic connolly, end of quote. this is simply unacceptable based on the ig report. the watch commander should have done more that night, not less your and it is appalling that senior secret service officials would disparage junior officers from doing the right thing. the agents and officers of the secret service will never have
11:09 am
the full trust of their colleagues while the fear of retaliation continues. finally, let me conclude by thanking director clancy for his cooperation and quick action. as the inspector general report concludes, ethical, director clancy acted appropriately upon receiving information about potential misconduct. inspector general also informed our committee that he received quote outstanding end of quote cooperation from director clancy and the secret service during the entire investigation. although we hope that director clancy be available today this is police week and he is attending several events to honor officers for acts of valor and the families of those who have fallen in the line of duty. and he called personally that chairman and yours truly to express his concern and regrets that he could not be with us
11:10 am
after this hearing. and i know that the chairman understood that. i understood it, and want to thank him for all he's done. is offered to reschedule for another date and i look forward to hearing from him mr. chairman and with that i yield back. >> i think the ranking member at it is to a politically that director clancy has been more than responsive to requests from congress and his availability is very much appreciated. we may disagree on some points, obviously, but it is accessible has been one of the best that we have seen to i also want to highlight just, at this moment, the secret service is evidently involved and engaged in apprehending somebody was trying to fly a drone. basing this vote on media reports, but everyday these men and women are beaten with very exceptionally difficult situations.
11:11 am
something could go wrong at any given time. they do far more than ever here or see a we greatly appreciate that. it is not enough to say we appreciate it. they need to know we love and care for them and we pray for them. that they have a nobel mission. that's why when something goes so terribly wrong we've got to learn from it and make sure that we fixed the problem. because some of the egregious behavior is just unacceptable. i would also note that just literally happening here today the secretary award for valor was given to one of the secret service agents william -- hometown from scranton pennsylvania. he kept duty at the station washington, d.c., let me recount while in route to work on november 22, 2014 from the u.s. secret service sergeant technician came upon a motor
11:12 am
vehicle incident accident at the baltimore-washington parkway and was the first to respond after notifying 911 he went to the scene to offer assistance. when the sergeant noticed flames originating from underneath the vehicle, he removed the occupant who is later determined of a broken pelvis and unable to walk. and men and women who serve as first responders, people like that to do this great work can't thank him enough. it was a tough situation. but we expect a lot. and we expect that people will make mistakes but not of such egregious consequences that it puts a nation in danger, puts others in danger and certainly can never ever put the president in danger. he is our president and i don't care republican or democrat. i don't care how you feel about the president. he is our president and has to stay safe. that's what is so pivotal that we continue to investigate that. i will hold the record open for five legislative days for any members who would like to submit a written statement but we will
11:13 am
not recognize the witness here today represents a large group of people who spent a lot of good time and innovative investigative work to come to this meeting today. so it's with pleasure that we welcome inspector general john roth. mr. roth has inspector general of the department of homeland security. on march 10, 2014 after previously serving as director of the office of criminal investigations at the fda, the food and drug administration did before that he had a longest in which career with the department of justice. welcome. person to committee rules all witnesses are to be sworn before they testify. so if you please rise and raise your right hand. do you solemnly swear or affirm the testimony are about to give will be the truth the whole truth, nothing but the truth? 90. let the record reflect the witness answered in the affirmative. mr. roth, when i recognize you and don't even bother starting the clock. we will hear your report and when you're done we will ask questions.
11:14 am
mr. roth. >> thank you, chairman chaffetz, ranking member cummings, members of the committee. think inviting me here today. asiaweek made public our report concerned the incident at the white house complex on the evening of march 4. our objective was to conduct a factual inquiry and to assess the reasonableness of the actions of the individuals involved. we conducted this investigation for march 12 until april 30. this inquiry centered on activities that two senior secret service supervisors. marc connolly is a deputy special agent in charge of the presidential protective division position yourself for the last two years. condoleezza these include all aspects of white house security. george ogilvie is the assistant special agent in charge of the washington field office and as a supervisor and the protection squad. ps3 does work in the presidential protection division. the report that we wrote is a summary of the investigation and it is attached to my written testimony. the materials of our investigation that we produced
11:15 am
our reports of interviews physical evidence and the documents we found have been turned over to the secret service in accordance with our regular procedures. the inspector general's office does not make recommendations as to whether i want personnel action should be taken but leaves that to the secret service. our duty in this instance are purely investigative. the report makes some conclusions based on evidence that we found. for example it was more likely than not that connolly and ogilvie's judgment was impaired by alcohol. but you agents displayed poor judgment, a lack of situational awareness and driving into the scene. while during their it is each deny drinking to excess. we must assess those denounced in light of the uniformed division officers observations of the agency behavior the fact that they just spent the last five hours and a restaurant bar, and that you highly experienced supervisors drove into a crime scene inches from what the rest
11:16 am
of the secret service was treating as a potential explosive device and which under different circumstances could have endangered their own lives and those of the uniformed division officers who responded. moreover, both agents were required to report their conduct up the chain of command but failed to do so. each of us told each told us that they did not believe what they have done him out of two a reportable incident. their failure to report reflects either poor judgment on the part or an affirmative desire to hide their conduct. with regard to the actions of the uniformed division officers we found that they reacted to a suspicious package and in accordance with secret service policy and operational procedure. however, the establishment of the perimeter should have been better executed. while there is often confusion inherent in a fast-moving and actually fluid situation a
11:17 am
number of vehicles and pedestrians came within close proximity to the object after the uniformed division officers of the a safety perimeter. the uniformed division officers make reasonable attempts while they were securing the scene to canvass the area for the suspects but an early partial description of the suspects vehicle foiled the ability to apprehend a suspect during her flight. the secret service investigative agents reacted quickly to identify the suspect and determine the nature of the threat. it was the watch commander's sole decision to allow connolly and ogilvie to pass without further inquiry into their sobriety. the watch commander made the decision on his own assessment based on his observation. while would have been far preferable if it ordered a field sobriety test or made other inquiries to establish both agents fitness to drive, the watch commander's actions must be considered in light of the vast disparity in rank between the watch commander and
11:18 am
connolly who is in the watch commander's chain of command the vague and insufficient secret service policy regarding drinking alcohol and driving government vehicles and a secret service reputation for punishing or ignoring those who would further investigate or report such violations. the watch commander reported the facts as he understood them to his superior officer. the watch commander and his subordinates should been able to rely on their superior officers to properly report the situation. both the uniformed uniform division deputy chief dyson and uniformed division chief simpson were notified that night at the two agents had driven into any type of parent and that alcohol was involved. and each could have reported the incident but did not. i would like to publicly acknowledge the hard work of agents of the office of inspector general who conducted this investigation if they displayed a dedication to the oig mission and professionalism
11:19 am
that doesn't out and i'm grateful for their efforts. additionally, i would like to express my appreciation to the outstanding cooperation we received from the secret service's office of professional responsibility ever director clancy himself. mr. chairman that concludes my testimony. i'm happy to answer any questions you may have. >> thank you. mr. roth, there was an enough about the incident forward up the chain of command on march 4. and chemical it more about that e-mail, in which he found? >> certainly. what we found was that, and let me get to the page in the report that has about. >> the version i have is page 15. >> thank you sir. correct. there was an e-mail that was sent right up the chain of command all the way to the saic
11:20 am
the presidential protection division that describes in very vague terms when it occurred at the entrance. >> why do you think the e-mail was forwarded by deputy chief dyson to mr. connolly himself? >> i think it was to let mr. connolly know that, in fact, word was getting out of the incident and they have the necessity to self-report. >> and how did mr. kohn respond to that e-mail? >> during the night when mr. connolly was driving home he called deputy chief dyson and expressed his concerns with regard to the fact this was getting out. >> so if you chief dyson denied he was aware of this comp the e-mail was about the vehicle containing mr. connolly, would you find that denial credible? >> not knowing any of the facts itsit certain would raise some additional questions i would have asked deputy chief dyson. the evidence that we have derived indicates that
11:21 am
mr. connolly and deputy chief dyson had a conversation as connolly was driving home expressing concerns about that e-mail itself. >> so for him to suggest that he had no idea that connolly was in the car that couldn't possibly be true, could? >> out interview of deputy chief dyson i believe he indicated that it sounded like connolly was in the car as they were having a discussion. >> digital investigators ask any questions about the video cameras being directed away from the area where they're questioning and ogilvie? know something that our whistleblowers, they were concerned that the tv cameras were actually moved away so they could not see that interaction. >> i was not aware of any of that. will be defined with regard to video preservation was as you know, there's only a 72 hour preservation of the video unless it is somehow burned to
11:22 am
removal media. what we found in the course of our investigation was the actual what i would call the barrel incident, ogilvie driving and striking the barrel and moving the barrel out of the way was in fact burned on removable media at the request of uniformed division officers who were on the scene and wanted to take out exactly how it was bad that there was no. we, of course, had no other video. there was nothing else to review other than that statement that i've gotten burned down. down. >> that's what our deep concerns long-term is why is it a policy can when when you require in a port to india 30 days and get the only retained this for hours. there were a couple different potential crimes going on. in which he people who are trying to detain this woman from driving away. they claim to be injured and assaulted. that video is not necessarily all captured from start to finish. the bundling of how we're going
11:23 am
to apprehend this person who had left a potential bomb. let me ask you whether any officers that night to outrank braun, dean of? >> that outrank braun? there was an assistant to the saic i think in the presidential protection division was there. so in other words, an investigative agent i think in a gs-14 love. i'm assuming that outranks braun but i'm not 100% sure. >> one of the concerns is about when director clancy new this thing was evidently spreading like wildfire. there's e-mails, telephone discussions, people are asking to videotape preserve because they were upset and irate about what was going on. but you at former agents retired agents, will you a newspaper reporter, you and members of congress all heard
11:24 am
about this before director clancy. is that possible? >> at barely that's what the facts show spinks who is responsible? where did it stop? where did it not continued up chain of command so that director clancy about? >> i think there are several points that go to one of the points but that is with connolly and ogilvie duet according to secret service policy company duty to report their own misconduct up the chain. so the saic, presidential protection division within saic should've been informed by connolly and the saic of the washington field office should have been informed by ogilvie but were not. so that's one point of failure. i think the other point of failure is with the supervisors the leadership in the uniform division, both the chief and the deputy chief could have and should have reported up to each of them when we interviewed and said well the reason we didn't do it is because connolly
11:25 am
believed or connolly told us he is going to self-report i did want to do it i would rather have connolly due to the difficult -- >> that technically both should've happened right? they should've self-report and reported company misconduct happened? >> correct. >> so why didn't they do it because i think he was a failure on those individuals parts to do what this is supposed to do. >> anybody else who should have reported? >> those were the four individuals who i believe that primary responsibility. there were individuals in the joint operations center who understood what went on. including the 1811, the special agent supervisor who was at the jock that evening who could have reported up, probably should have reported it up. the audio form of division individuals themselves could have reported it as well start my main concern is that they did not preserve all the video that was germane to both the leaving
11:26 am
of the package the fleeing of the person and incident itself. with that i yield back and i recognize the ranking member mr. cummings. >> picking up exactly where the gentleman left off. mr. roth, i noticed that in the beginning of the report you mentioned that you were referring specific conclusions about potential systemic issues facing the secret service until you have completed your investigation into at least five or six other incidents come is about direct? >> that's correct. >> what form do you think that is going to take? in other words it seems like we have a cultural of secrecy, a culture of complacency a culture of fear of retaliation. i mean, how did you what do you see, where are you going with that? do you follow the? >> yes i do.
11:27 am
or icy our office, where we about is having an independent fact-finding ability to give it a go in and gather documents and individuals who are, in fact, compelled under dhs rules to talk to us. what we intended it is very similar to what we did with the bush residents alarm report that was issued a few weeks ago. we're going to find a lot of facts that's exactly what it is that we find that we're going to use sunlight published reports report them both to the secretary, to the director of the secret service and the committee to report. we think that at the end of those fact findings some of the conclusions are some of the themes will become apparent. but for example, we will do or we are in the process of doing an investigation into the 24th incident at the cdc with the president was in close proximity to an armed security guard announced to the secret service. we will write a fax report about exactly what happened where
11:28 am
there were points of failure within that, and publish that, i came to this committee as well as the other committees of jurisdiction to the secretary into the director. >> it sounds similar to an doj comes into the police department and is looking at patterns of practice, is that similar do you think? >> i think that's a pretty good analogy. the only difference is we're going to do is silly. in other words were not going to wait until the end. we will produce these because we think it's important to get the information out as quickly as we possibly can -- serially. >> you report calls vague and insufficient. first let me quickly walked through some details about this. according to port the party started about 530 time and last until 730 tonight. you report says that wasn't open-market afterwards mr. connolly and mr. ogilvie stayed at the bar with two of the colleagues and according to your
11:29 am
report, mr. ogilvie opened a new bar tab at 7:44 p.m. and closed it three hours later is that right? >> that's correct. >> as part of your investigation view of engadget part did you not? >> we did. >> i would like to put up on the screen bigger report says they purchased quote eight glasses of scotch, to vodka drinks, one glass of wine and three glasses of beer. they were on a roll, looking at this tab -- [laughter] the first three items are beers then a glass of wine and eight, eight johnny walker red's, and then to vodka drinks. supporting alcoholic drink in all come is about right? >> that's correct. >> the agents claimed they did not have all of these things. mr. ogilvie told investigators that five glasses of scotch glass of wine and three beers
11:30 am
when quote given away to other but he cannot remove to encompass that direct? >> correct. >> but at a minimum mr. ogilvie admitted to drinking two scotches and one big mr. cao admitted to drinking two beers and both admitted that they do their government vehicles that same evening on their on the way home, is that right? >> that's correct. >> the secrets of sound policy that prohibits from operating to vehicles and a quote while under the influence, but you report says that this policy applies only to the uniform division officers, not to agents like mr. connolly or mr. ogilvie. this seems a bit ridiculous to me but do you know why that wasn't the case of? >> we don't. what we found with a lot of these policies is there put in sort of a peace deal and patchwork fashion but we don't have a good explanation as to why it only applied to the uniform division is not to the
11:31 am
special agent. >> the secret service also come is also part of the homeland security, department of homeland security which has its own policy prohibiting all the poison drinking alcohol within eight hours of operating a government vehicle. so even if we take the agents at their word in terms of how much they drank that night it seemed they violated existing dhs policies, but you report says that you found and i quote no evidence that anyone in the secret service was aware of this policy. is that right? >> that's correct. >> that's a problem. >> yes. >> i don't see how we can help the elite of the elite and they don't even know what their own rules are. after the incident on march 4, secret service, this is a new row, prohibiting all of employers from drinking alcohol within 10 hours of driving a government vehicle. this new row is even more strict than the dhs come is that right?
11:32 am
>> that's correct. >> do you know if the secret service is taking steps to educate their employees about this new policy or not? are they conducting training? >> we did not look at the insistence get -- in this investigation spent i'm sure this committee will take up. my last thing, there's kucinich could probably drink alcohol at dhs. we have seen that in the past incidents as well but also given the agency's vague policies is made worse the problem. i hope today's hearing is part of a broader effort to reform the agency's policies to make absolutely clear to employees what is expected of them and to revitalize the agency shall conform is critical mission. and once again become the elite of the elite. with that i yield back. >> mr. chairman? just as a matter of personal privilege. mr. connolly is not related to me. nor do i like scotch. thank you. [laughter]
11:33 am
>> duly noted. we were not recognized the gentleman from florida. >> thank you, mr. chairman. mr. roth come in your report you said that the finding or the incident should be considered in light of the secret service reputational punishing or ignore those who would further investigate or report such violation. that interest me because before you can your the dhs office of inspector general released a 2013 report which did not find evidence that the secret service had misconduct or that leadership has fostered and vibrant that tolerates inappropriate conduct. given your tenure at giving this report, what are your thoughts about the 2013 dhs report? is that an accurate reflection of what's going on in the culture of the secret service right have? >> certainly not right now it is not. one of the things about the report that you reference in
11:34 am
2013 is that are passing findings within the. for example they did a survey, an electronic survey in which 138 electronic survey respondents personally observed excessive alcohol consumption in 86% of them in cases that do not report such behavior. the report also indicated of the 2500 some electronic survey respondents, 44% of them felt they could not report misconduct without fear of retaliation if they in fact, reported that. within the report itself the are some very, very disturbing trends. and i think nature of what is we've seen since then i believe that there is a series problem within the secret service spirit that report also found 36% of the respondents did not believe that senior managers are held accountable within the agency. you think that that is still the case do they?
11:35 am
>> we haven't done any work on that but it would not surprise me if it is still that case spent is any indication that the process for discipline within the secret service has improved since the 2013 report of? >> well, it certainly has improved since carter ham get. the secret service has taken steps -- cartagena. have an office of integrity that is the one that imposes discipline as a result of the 2013 inspection we made a number of different recommendations including a table of penalties which they now have adopted. i think the secret is moving in the right direction in this area after cartagena. >> it's safe to say that that a 2013, the conclusions reached in the 2013 report, that there's a conflict between the conclusions you reach in your report? >> i would agree with that. >> the question is then how to correct what has led to the
11:36 am
cultural problem that report identified and i agree with you on the line for 2013 report we saw evidence of that from the people who responded to the survey. has people doing oversight, what do we need to be doing what does the agency need to be doing, in your judgment? >> candidate i think director clancy is moving in the right direction. as i said it indicated to put together a table of penalties. they have an office of integrity. i think they're doing increasing training on this. i think the trade of violations of this research a comfortable fit auto accident in florida involving some of the uniform division that was alcohol related i think discipline that was imposed was appropriate. i won't expect that a problem that the used to create will be fixed overnight by do think they're moving in the right direction spent amongst your expense with the of other components of dhs, do they all have similar issues with alcohol
11:37 am
or is it secret service unique in that regard? >> we have been taking a specific look at other law enforcement agencies to the degree that we have with the secret service. >> but you have not had a had a lot of alcohol related accidents is brought to your attention to judah to investigate come is that there? >> that's their. >> do any of the other dhs proponents have a similar reputation where somebody who's trying to do the right thing could end up being punished or marginalize? >> again we have looked at that service for difficult for me to opine on that. >> but you can say that is not a problem, correct? >> that's correct. they haven't been brought to my attention if that's the case. >> let me thank you for your portrait of a ghost done time and had a lot of good information, so thanks for doing that and we want to see you with some of the other incidents. were looking for to those results as well. i yield back.
11:38 am
>> i recognize ms. horton from the district of columbia. >> you have been pretty busy today, mr. chairman. mr. roth, we appreciate your report. you of course see some congressional in patients. that impatience i suppose this committee is paid to be impatient. particularly though in light of the repetitive incidents the so i'm trying to be as objective as i can and to put this in perspective. i can do that because i ran agency that was a lot more troubled at the time than the secret service, huge backlog and the rest and someone had said to me than a couple of months, get in order, i would've been in bad shape if it took me time to get rid of the backlog. something to keep in mind what it is mr. clancy found and what he perhaps has done. i noticed i note i asked staff to find out when was he
11:39 am
appointed exactly. he is actually a long-term employee of the secret service. he was acting from october. at march 4 incident occurred i consider his acting time, but it was official as of february 19. now, as of the march 4 incident, director clancy apparently had not issued the order that ultimately that was issued after that incident involving the two agents, required to report a chicken in any activities et cetera. my concern with that is whether or not this indicates, it seems to me in light of his having been with the agency for example, even during the time when there was no reporting of
11:40 am
the bullets that had penetrated the white house. i was concerned that the first thing he did was not to say, look, let me know before the press knows and before anybody knows. it bothered me that as short a time as that may seem that he certainly was aware of so i really, my question goes to whether or not in light of this order, after the march 4 incident, you believe there is sufficient clarity so that that one seems pretty clear as to what is required. for example, i don't know, and two agents know about drinking off duty? does there need to be greater clarification beyond reporting now up the chain of command?
11:41 am
what is required of an agent on and off duty? these agents have been under huge duress according to the special panel. to quote them, for years of service has taken on additional missions in both protective and investigative roles, but it is not matched its request, but has not matched its request for additional resources of those expended. they reported they had been on 12 hour days and with fewer and fewer days off. so again if you step back and look at it they had been subject to this question in the rest of it. the panel said that they needed advanced 200 officers and 85 agents, and that they were down 500. so essentially you have some
11:42 am
overworked overburdened agents. so you would imagine if people given night in command had been in the chain of command had been overworked that way that it might go out and drink too much. is there any indication? even an officer of someone like the secret service and you are off duty, but subject perhaps to being called on duty. but bearing in mind that everybody is entitled to a private life. is there enough clarification about what is required on and off be so we can be assured that there cannot be another incident like this? >> i think you raise a good point good concern and it is certain one we wrestled with with regard to what does it mean to be on duty? because most of the special agents are subject to recall at any time. does that mean they can never consume alcohol?
11:43 am
it would seem to be an irrational policy if that's the case. but i agree that the competition for clarification with regard to that. >> all right, thank you. thank you very much. mr. chairman, i would ask that because i think this is very murky area that we ask director clancy to bring some clarification. for example certain number of hours perhaps before being required to report for duty. some clarification might be fair in light of what they should expect. >> i wholeheartedly agree. which is yet homeland security issued by secretary johnson is different than what individual agencies within his department have in front of them. should be a uniform standard across the board, and there's not anything that is one of the fixes we need to work with -- >> are made even higher standard for secret service. >> amen. let's have recognized the judgment of north carolina for
11:44 am
five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. let me sort of pickup what we are just discussing when it comes to off duty, on duty in the aspect of driving government vehicles to the question i would like to start with is did he determine whether any other -- drove government vehicles after consume alcohol? >> we did not. we interviewed some of individuals who were at the sort of farewell party and watch alcohol was served. some of them alcohol and then for example, went back to the office to continue to work. we did not really pressed it. my point with regard to that is that the dhs policy was really unknown to the secret service. no one within the secret service understood it. we did not see any attempts by the department itself to promote this policy. the policy was in an annual for essentially maintenance of cars government cars.
11:45 am
it was not a place which would naturally look to see a policy like that. so it was difficult for us to blame somebody for violating a policy that one they didn't know about come into, don't make an effort to tell the about. >> and understand your certain aspects and ethics as we continue to learn even as a new member of congress. however, let me ask what any of the party attendees of the dsaic part of the executive staff? if so, should not they be held liable to understand what the rules are? >> does. i agree with that. subsequent to this of course has been noted the secret service put a new policy in place come a very bright line policy in place which says you cannot step into or operate a company vehicle is in the last 10 hours you've had any alcohol whatsoever. certainly the behavior that took place at the party is now prohibited. >> there's an ambiguity, then
11:46 am
you approved of the fact that they did know at least that policy part of the companies that direct? most secret service agents come if you been drinking know not to get back into your government vehicle. >> we found was a lot of uncertainty as to what the policy was. it was not drive drunk obviously, but the question of when you are impaired come in other words is it okay to have a drink and then drive? i think anybody who's hearing director clancy in fact talk about that. if you're not able to control your actions not the legal limit but could be something less, may not be intoxicated by a legal limit but some could say don't have the proper builders. so some sort environment. that's such a vague sense that it is functioning unenforceable. >> some secret service employees returned to work after consuming alcoholic beverages? >> correct. >> what has been done or said
11:47 am
reprimanded, what happened after that was done to? >> our policy is that we find the facts and conduct the investigation and then we give everything that we have to secret service because we're not in the discipline business. >> i understand that the ruf anything that has been done to those employed who were drinking and then came back to work to? >> no. we have transmitted our information last week, so we haven't heard anything back. typically we won't buy the weight. >> we talked about the culture of the secret service and i appreciate some of the work you talked about as far as he feel like there's been a little bit of improvement or change or 30000-foot expectation of raising the bar a little bit. this kind of contradicts that mindset that they're still that frat party mentality that would oblige everybody else doesn't apply to us. i don't want to speculate or create some kind of hypothesis but is that a fair statement that there are still things,
11:48 am
work that needs to be done inside the secret service to get the bar raised? >> i share your concerns which is exactly that we don't know the degree to the problem but it seems like are some issues. >> on personal note mr. roth, you always do exemplary work and i appreciate that. think the americans appreciate arthur mr. thank you very much. with that i yield back thank you, mr. chairman. >> now recognize mr. clay from missouri for five minutes. >> mr. chairman. mr. roth i want to ask about an e-mail exchange that you investigated obtained between the two edited been drinking in the bar. mr. connolly and mr. ogilvie. first we walk through some facts. the incident happened on the night of march 430 report found that mr. and mr. ogilvie should have reported this incident but
11:49 am
neither did. is outright? >> that's correct. >> based on their failure to report, it seems like they were hoping this whole thing would just blow over. two days later on march 6 mr. connolly had his chance to come clean. he had a meeting with his superior, the special agent in charge robert buster are but according to report he never mentioned anything involving this incident. your report says this, and i quote, connolly met with his supervisor transit bus on march the sixth and discussed the office's handling of the confrontation with the suspect in the suspicious package incident. toddling did not mention in the incident involving him and ogilvie. so with this meeting on march 6 mr. connolly basically decided that he would just keep his mouth shut and not tell the
11:50 am
supervisor what happened, is that correct? >> that's correct. >> and he also would have learned at that meeting nobody else had reported the incident either. and so here is what i want to ask you about. the very next day on march the seventh, mr. connolly and mr. ogilvie had an e-mail exchange but i'd like to put it up on the screen. can we -- is it -- been recovered okay. okay, mr. over the and this is an e-mail exchange, mr. ogilvie at 8:24 said allgood. mr. connolly at 830 muy bueno. then that 8:50 you are for mr. ogilvie, you are an angel. mr. roth i don't know what was in defense but certainly one
11:51 am
interpretation of this exchange is that mr. ogilvie was asking a, are recorded in trouble for this? or are we allgood? then mr. connolly who just met with his boss the day before determined that nobody else had reported the incident assured him that everything would be fine. try for your investigators interviewed mr. ogilvie. according to their interview notes, mr. ogilvie admitted that the time text of his e-mail was to check in with mr. connolly about the march 4 incident. is that correct? >> yes sir. >> in contrast mr. connolly told your investigators that this e-mail had nothing to do with the march 4 incident. he claimed that he had no idea what this e-mail was about no clue, he told your investigators at the core he did not know what the intent was behind it but it was open-ended and he did
11:52 am
not know if it was in reference to march 4 or the busy day that he was having. mr. roth i have one last question for you. do you buy that? >> no, i don't. i believe that this was communication between the two to make sure or see whether or not the word had leaked out with regard to the incident that happened two days prior. >> what usually happens when a witness like this is being so dishonest? are there any follow-ups to persons who are dishonest? i guess this was the deposition or just a question of? >> it was an interview that took place as part of an investigation that we return. he has the obligation to tell
11:53 am
the truth come and i think there are penalties as a result of not telling the truth. >> well thank you so much for your responses. mr. chairman, i yield back. >> now recognize mr. himes from georgia for five minutes. >> thank you mr. chairman. you've already stated, mr. roth, that it was a failure on the part of dyson and simpson not to report the incident. and their excuse was that they thought this would be self-reported. do you believe that allowing individuals to self report is acceptable to? >> no, i do not. i think everything taken in the supervisory chain, that they have an independent duty to report this either to me or to the secret service office of professional responsibility, or of the chamber i would note that the uniform division chief said he didn't think it was his job to report misconduct that happened by --
11:54 am
>> so is this a policy problem or a communication problem? >> i think it is a communication problem. >> what does the policies i? >> the policies that individuals have responsibility to report suspicions of violations of law over regulation either to the inspector general or for example, here to the office of professional responsibility. >> does the policy states that individuals must self-report? >> there's a secret service policy that requires individuals to self-report yes. >> but you don't believe that is effective? >> i think it's effective if you have the integrity to do so. obviously, if -- >> all right, but you just said that it's not an acceptable practice and yet its policy. can we expect a policy to change the? >> i think that the question should direct to the secret service. >> do you believe that dyson and
11:55 am
simpson should be punished? >> we are not in the business of determining what the appropriate punishment should be spent i'm asking if you believe they should be? >> i think their behavior was troubling spitting deeply they should be punished? >> i think there ought to be consequences for these kinds of actions, yes. >> deeply any personnel at dhs or secret service or whatever should be able to retire in order to avoid punishment for misconduct? >> again that gets into areas of personnel law that -- >> but i'm asking your opinion. >> personally i've been in the government for 29 years. i have a pension. it's a vested. that is my property. i would like to think i can rely on that. >> but in order to avoid punishment for misconduct, reversing a lot of this these days and is quite disgusting to me personally and a lot of people to talk to pick his way of dodging consequences for personal behavior it enables
11:56 am
people to behave any way to point to them when they get caught with paint in the cookie jar they just retire and there's no consequences. deeply that is okay? >> i certainly understand the frustration. a maximum consequence would determination from the service which is functionally what retirement will do. >> without punishment though for misconduct. summer along the way we got to do with the problem of misconduct. and at this point it seems to be nothing. if anyone is caught they just retire and there's no consequences to that's an entirely unacceptable policy went all is said and done at some point misconduct has to be dealt with because we are seeing it seems like come on a regular basis secret service high profile cases of misconduct and there is a root cause somewhere for this culture that allows for misconduct. but deeply the root cause is? >> i think it is a lack of
11:57 am
accountability. >> okay, so how do we correct it? >> well again, i think what the secret service has done come and again this is probably better addressed to the secret service is instituted a series of reforms, for example, a table penalties come and more uniform way of administering discipline better communication, those kinds of things. >> there's a reputation and i know you know this from the report that there's punishment for those who report misconduct. have you ever considered rewarding people for reporting misconduct? >> financial? >> in any way. i mean, would that help bring accountability? >> i think that's something that's worthy of some discussion. certainly want to do things that we tried to do for example what i did when we came when i came on board is i sent an e-mail to all 7000 e-mail
11:58 am
addresses in the secret service indicating that we were interested in finding sort of misconduct, waste fraud within the secret service, reminded him of the protections they have within the whistleblower protection act as well as the inspector general's act. as result of that we've gotten some work some reports of the report on the bush residents that had an alarm that had been out for 13 months, was a result of the whistleblower. somebody came forward and said look this is an unacceptable thing. you should see what happened. we were able to investigate it able to write a report, brought it to light and we fixed the problem. what i'm hopeful of is that as we move down the road people understand that, in fact, they do have some redress the reporting something up the chain will not simply be ignored but they will actually fix the problem. but it was a sometime. >> now recognize the judgment from massachusetts, mr. lynch for five minutes.
11:59 am
>> thank you mr. chairman. 90, mr. roth, for your good work. you did a bang up job on this investigation, into the bottom of it and we appreciate it. i want to talk a bit about the videotape procedure there at the white house. we had a chance a bunch of the numbers, chairman chaffetz and night and ranking member cummings went over to the command post for the secret service, and they had a full spectrum situation there where they have maybe a dozen different cameras different angles, and they've got a pretty good view of the white house. the problem is that in this case let's just take this case with the most recent incident where the woman got out of the car and left the bomb in the driveway. that tape was only retained i think for 72 hours, and they did
12:00 pm
not they did not they did not tell director clancy for five days. .. to the tapes were destroyed and but for the fact this fellow, after he left, had a car accident down by the 14th
12:01 pm
14th street bridge, we would not have known about that. would not have been able to connect that incident to shots fired at the white house. so what i'm getting at is the airports everybody uses the 30-day cycle on these tapes. the technology today allows us to do that, and i know you had some inquiry into the reasons why they collapsed that time. why would the secret service want to tape over the tapes when we have had these repeated incidents where a longer preservation of those tapes say, 30 days, would help us to make the white house more secure and the second example i gave, presidents more and his two daughters were in washington at the time, one of the daughters was home.
12:02 pm
we're talking about pretty severe consequences here, and we're sort of whistling through the graveyard and allowing this practice to go on. what i'd like to try to do is to change the protocol, the security protocol at the white house to start doing things in a way that makes the president and his family safer. obviously you got people jump canning over the fence running through the white house helicopters landings, drones, i'm starting to lose faith in the secret service i am, and the level of seriousness we have in protecting our president and his family. this is basic stuff. so after having inquired about the taping practices at the white house, can you tell me if you have any recommendations that they might adopt to accomplish our goal here of protecting the president? >> what we found was actually even worse than what you
12:03 pm
described, because for the longest time it was only a 24-hour retention policy, and they only changed that after the incident in which there were these functionally gate crashers at the state dinner 2011. then they moved it to 72 hours. the system is, i'm sure you know a combination of digital and analog, it was stood up in 2007, and really in some ways this is very similar to what we saw in the bush residence where they had installed an alarm system after this was the senior bush left office and never replaced it. it was a 20-year-old alarm system protecting a former president. they didn't have a system in place to be able to update these things. there was not -- for example even like a ticket system where if you needed something repaired there would be a record that you requested these repairs. so a lot of their fundamental
12:04 pm
business practices simply have not kept up with the 21st 21st century. the good news is that, with regard to the white house video system that there are updates going to occur in the fear future. >> any timeline on that? >> i do. i'm not sure it's public information. >> okay, okay, fair enough. i yield back. >> we're getting close to a vote want to keep hustling here. we'll recognize mr. hice of georgia -- mr. carter, my bad. >> thank you for being here. i want to get at something that is bothering me through the series of hearings. the culture if you will, of the secret service about reporting. we have been told, it's been alleged, the watch hander actually said he did not want to report this. he didn't want to ask for a field sobriety test because is
12:05 pm
would have been a career-killer. is that true? >> that is what one of the under-- uniform division officers told us, yes the watch commander said -- the watch commander subsequently denied that. >> well, when he says a career killer is he referring to his career for reporting it or referring to their career if they had been found guilty. i'm not sure -- >> the sense we got was that was one of the motivations for the watch commander not to do any further inquiry, is because he thought there may be retaliation against him, in other words it would be a career killer for him. certainly county with some of the thing wes found in the 2013 report with regard to a high percentage of people failing to report misconduct, believing that either nobody would listen or you would in fact be affirmatively retaliate against. >> tell me what the policy is. what is the policy of the secret service when someone does
12:06 pm
recognize this or when someone is faced with a situation. are you required to report or is it -- you better keep it quiet? >> certainly not the latter. it's the dhs policy that they're required to report it to either the secret service office of professional responsibility, or to the inspector general. >> you don't report it, what is the punishment? >> i'm not aware at this point what that is. >> it would appear to me that's an important component. >> correct. correct. as i said, inspector general's office is not involved in specific discipline cases. that's the secret service's responsibility. we engage in fact finding and hand it over to at the secret service to do what you suggest. >> i'm still a little disappointed -- not in you but just in that -- it would appear to me that would be cut and dry.
12:07 pm
>> sure. >> okay. let me ask you about the two agents involved. when they arrived at the white house complex the officers who stopped them, asked them, where are you coming from? >> correct. >> their answer was,. >> secret service headquarters. >> and that turns out to be a blatant lie. >> that is not in fact trump correct. >> what's the consequence of that? we teach our children, there are consequences to actions. this was an action. what is the consequence? >> sure. there is a secret service table of penalties that talks about the range of consequences for pick things, and i can go through the specific ones with regard to -- >> i appreciate that. i understand what you're trying to do. but let me ask you this, what is going to happen to them? >> there is a process that is in place, that the office integrity for secret service runs, which is the deputy of the office of integrity will write up, i
12:08 pm
assume take a look at our report and supporting materials that we have produced, and determine whether or not discipline is warranted. if he does, he will write up what is functionally a charging letter and give that to the individuals involved here, connellly and ogilvie. they have due process rights. they have the ability to appeal it to the integrity officer as well as if the consequences are severe enough, to the merit system protections -- >> within the written laws is one of the options to go ahead and retire? >> i'm not sure. certainly you can only discipline people who are federal employees. if somebody leaves the federal service there's no discipline item pose because the most discipline you can impose is to throw them out of the federal service. >> does got on their permanent record? >> yes it would. >> is that shared with the prospective employer? if one of them goes into the
12:09 pm
private sector, do you tell them this is what happened. >> i'm not -- >> or just them they we employed from that's day to this day. >> i'm not 100 shores inch instance of these two individuals a google search would take care of that. >> well, obviously in this. >> but i'm not sure that's an area of employment law -- >> i understand. my point is that the concern that i have is just with the general culture that exists in the secret service at this time. >> i certainly share that concern. >> absolutely. thank you mr. chairman, yield back. >> glad to see mr. carter coming in under time. now recognize the gentleman from pennsylvania mr. cartwright. >> thank you marx chairman. i want to thank you for mentioning the valor routinely shown by agents of the secret service, and in particular and especially a young man you mentioned from scranton, pennsylvania in my district,
12:10 pm
today the u.s. secret service is proud to note that it's known sergeant technician william muir from scranton was presented by dhs secretary jeh john son the secretary's award for valor which is awarded for displays of exceptional courage of course as the chairman mentioned, young mr. yoher actually pulled an accident victim from the baltimore, washington, parkway accident pulled that victim from a burning vehicle and it was later determined that the victim would have been unable to extricate himself without the agent's help. so we're exceptionally proud of william duher in pennsylvania today. we're also proud of him for coming in 30th in the scranton half marathon last month covering 13.1-miles in less than handhour and a half. i wish i could do that.
12:11 pm
mr. roth, we're here to talk about failures of the secret service, though, and it's a dower duty you have to talk about the downsides of thing wes have seen in the secret service. your report concludes quote both connellly and ogilvie had a duty to report the incident to their superiors but did not do so. is there a policy requiring them to self-report incidents of this nature? >> yes there is. >> can you explain the policy? >> sure. i'm simply reading from the manual that the secret service has, and it says, any incident in which an employee of the secret service involved which mail be the cause of publicity or inquiry from others must be immediately reported to the employee's supervisor. the range of incidents which might occur is so great it's not possible to enumerate them. each employee must judge when in his or her opinion the matter
12:12 pm
may or could be given publicity in the newspaper or other media or may be the subject of inquiry. and it goes on. that gives the gist. >> now you found that other officials within the agency knew about the incident and failed to alert senior leadership, in particular you found and i quote, both uniform division deputy chief dyson and uniform division chef kevin simpson can be notified that night that two agents had been drinking and had driven into an evacuated area and each could have reported the indent unquote. is that correct? >> that's correct. >> why didn't they report the incident? >> we asked them that question. their answers were twofold at least for deputy chief dyson it was that he had spoken to connellly twice and connellly had said he would self-report. dyson believed it was better for connally to self-report than for him to report. with regard to the chief he said one that he believed
12:13 pm
connally would report, and two he said it was not his job to report misconduct on behalf of agents but rather, just misconduct on the behalf of uniform division officers. >> who should deputy chief die son and simpson reported to. >> the special agent in charge of the presidential protection division or the office professional responsibility, or the inspector general. >> cording to your report, chief simpson is the most senior secret service official who was aware that mr. connally had been drinking when he and mr. ogilvie drove into the evacuated area. what was his explanation for chief simpson failing to report this information to anyone else? >> again what he said was he did not report the incident because he did not believe it was his job to do so and assumed that connally was going to self-report. >> i don't think there's any acceptable reason for failing to
12:14 pm
report a clear incident of misconduct of this nature. the secret service has to make it clear that reporting misconduct is not optional, employees are required to report potential misconduct, right up the chain of command. mr. roth i thank you for your important work on this matter, and i yield back, mr. chairman. >> thank you. now recognize mr. meadows of north carolina for five minutes. >> thank you mr. chairman. thank you mr. roth, for your work. please thank your staff as well. it was timely, quick. i appreciate your frank and direct answers. i especially appreciate that because that's not always the case and so i want to give credit where credit is due. i do want to follow up a little bit on some of the questions that have been asked with regards to the policy, the alcohol policy that is either known or unknown. i think your testimony you said
12:15 pm
that really most people are not aware of the dhs policy. is that correct? >> at the time they were not aware. since this incident, there have been steps -- >> that doesn't seem to jibe with what the whistleblowers have toil us some the fact you can find it on your web site. maybe you have to look for it out bit -- so why would they not know about that? just wilful ignorance or the eight floor not stressing the policy or why? >> it's a matter, i think of both publicizing and it educating individuals about it. for example we interviewed ogilvie's direct supervisor, who didn't know what the policy was. >> let me go further there is a policy that everyone is aware of and i believe it's called the ten-hour rule. >> correct. >> and so we have this receipt that would indicate that there were a number of people that
12:16 pm
were drinking and possibly reporting, would they not have been violating if they reported, that ten-our rule. >> we look at that issue specific live with ogilvie connally the bar tab was closed out at 10:47 roughly. they entered the east street gate slightlily before 11:00 p.m. so they finished drinking before 11:00 p.m. their duty hours started at 9:00 a.m. the next day -- >> what about others -- obviously it was a pretty big party. >> correct. what we found though, was that -- at least by the preponderance of the evidence the four individuals there were the last to leave there wasn't anybody else left. >> you have been thorough but we need to re-emphasize that. let me tell you the reason why i asked. on the way here, i have got two calls from random agents that i couldn't name because they're afraid to divulge who they are but literally within an hour of
12:17 pm
this hearing letting me know of all kinds of problems, of expectations of secret service agents to actually put liquor in the rooms of supervisors as they travel that if they don't do that it's frowned upon. gs15 have been caught inappropriate with females and yet still leaving ammo or guns behind. i mean, i'm hearing all kinds of things. if i'm a member of congress hearing this, are you hearing the same kinds of things or should we report them to you so you can investigate? it's troubling. we have this culture of -- from the most elite protective service in the world and yet it seems like i'm getting calls almost daily from different people that there's a problem. >> by all means encourage them to contact us. we'll take the stuff seriously as we have with this incident and we have, for example, the
12:18 pm
bush residence system and the other look-backs we're doing on the security issues we're continuing to look at. i think the only way that the culture is going to change is if we can demonstrate we can prove that in fact we are going to take these things seriously and do something. >> i have your commitment here today that you not only are going to take this incident but you're going to look forward and if we give you additional things or if other agents give you a number of other potential things to look at, you'll take them seriously and that you're 100% committed to rooting out the problems we have within the agency. is that correct? >> yes. >> i know we're about to have votes. i'll yield back. >> now recognize miss watson coleman of new jersey for five minutes. >> thank you very much. mr. chairman, thank you mr. roth. ask you a question. the secret service division or component is a component of dhs. right? >> correct. >> so, do you think that it
12:19 pm
makes better sense that there is -- there are department-wide policies regarding such important things as opposed to component-wide policies. >> not an issue i've looked at our thought about. there's certainly a facial extra lilted to have uniformity across all of dhs which clearly there is not right now. >> we hear that in the other committee i'm on. according to memorandum of understanding between the secret service and your office, certain categories of misconduct must be referred to you. >> correct. >> so, did what happened on march 4th constitute something of that level. >> yes. >> and in your estimation, who should have reported it? how many people? what level? what are those titles? this doesn't fall on one person's responsibility.
12:20 pm
right? >> correct. the duty to report it to office, the office of inspector general is the office of professional responsibility within the secret service. so, in other words if they get a complaint that talks about somebody who is a gs-15 or above and others sort of categories of incidents they have a duty to report it to us. once they hear of something they must report it to us, and then we make decisions as to whether we'll take it or not. independent of that, of course, is the duty that all dhs employees have of reporting suspicions of wrong-doing. >> i may have missed some of this because some is getting a little confusing to me. this entity that should have reported to you professional -- >> office of professional responsibility. internal affairs group within the secret service. >> how soon after the march 4th incident did it know of it? >> they knew about it on march 9th. >> and you were informed of it on? >> march 9th. >> by them. >> correct.
12:21 pm
>> and mr. clancy was informed of this on march 9th also in. >> correct. >> mr. clancy did not start an investigation of his own at the same time that you all were going to take this on? >> that's correct. >> is that the usual operating procedure, where if you're going to do it, the agency is not going to conduct -- >> exactly. only one group can conduct an investigation. otherwise you have people tripping all over each other. so once a decision is made for us to take it, then everybody has to step back and allow us to do our investigation. >> so, we were going to focus in on who or what level believed is the biggest problem here. other than the self-reporting up the chain of command where would that be? >> sure. i think the point of failure was the senior management within the uniform division, who knew of it and did not report it to, for
12:22 pm
example, director clancy or the office of professional responsibility. >> is that the watch commander? >> no. the watch hander reported it up his chain of command, for example, to the deputy chief of the uniform division. additionally there was a special agent in the joc, the joint operations center, who was aware of what went on. she certainly could have and probably had a duty to report that as well. >> i'm going to close also because i know we're running late. i want to associate myself with something that mr. heiss said. agree with him that you cannot -- i don't care how long you worked in public service. it could be five years it could be 15 years or 20 years. but if you are found to have done something that is as eagree just as this is, you ought not to be able to walk away with the bench fits you had associated with being a good public servant.
12:23 pm
there needs to be some consequence. you ought not to be able to say i retire. thank you mr. roth. thank you mr. chairman. >> thank you i now recognize mr. russell for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and thank you mr. roth, for your tireless investigations and trying to make our department of homeland security better. it is appreciated. there's a lot of discussion back and forth on this incident about vague secret service policy regarding drinking alcohol and driving. i guess my take on it is a little more simple. would driving through a marked potential crime scene be acceptable performance off-duty, either sober inebriated? >> neither sir. >> would entering the white house complex buzzed or inebriated be considered acceptable off-duty behavior?
12:24 pm
>> no. >> the second in command who was involved with this incident, what kind of public confidence does it instill when that occurs that we can protect the president of the united states? >> well, i share your concern particularly given the fact that he was responsible for all the operations within the white house complex. >> what kind of example do you think that sets to the agents and also the seriousness of the duties that ought to be performed, whether on duty or off, knowing that any of them at any moment could be called upon to protect the leader of the free world? >> that is something we wrestled with with regard to the fact that special agents are in fact subject to re-call at a moment's notice. in fact, that is one of the reasons they have government cars that they can drive home at night is because at any moment they could be called out. to give you good example of that is the two philadelphia agents
12:25 pm
who at 2:00 in the morning had to sort of respond to the home of the woman who had dropped the package. they didn't know that evening that they were going to get that call and have to drive in the pouring rain to this woman's house. so it's very, very troubling. >> given that sense of duty and also the arduous selection process to elevate an agent to this level of duty, this is the highest performance level the secret service agents can perform. what discipline has agent connally or agent ogilvie received, and if none, what charges are pending? >> the way the process works is there's an investigation done which is now completed. as of last week we transmitted all of our materials to the secret service to their office of professional responsibility and their office of integrity which then manages that program. and what happens is i understand it is that there would be the deputy within the office of integrity who would then assess
12:26 pm
the materials and basically write a charging document, if that's the wright word, proposing certain discipline. >> when i was a commander in the military, often on an ig investigation, we would receive recommendations of courses of action. what would you recommend? >> well, they have a table of penalty -- >> i've read through it. what would you recommend sir? >> well, i think this is very, very serious conduct. i think the fact that it has caused the -- me to expend all these resources has caused the director of the secret service to distract himself from his important business to have to testify before here, appropriately so. i think it is very, very detrimental to the effective functioning of the secret service. >> well, i think all of america would agree, and should the american public in light of this have more confidence or less in our government's ability to protect our president? >> well, i'm hoping this process
12:27 pm
will create a situation which people will have more confidence that we're able to acknowledge our problems and fix our problems. if it doesn't get resolved, then i would say there would be less confidence. >> and so we had a similar answer after colombia, after drones, a barricade after after, after. we're talking about the president of the united states. what is your estimation, are they taking this serious and will they make the necessary changes that the american public demands? >> i've had a number of conversations with director clancy about this. i think he is committed to doing it. i will have to shay they didn't get into the situation overnight and they're not going to get out of it overnight. die think he's making the right moves? i absolutely do. >> well, i hope so.
12:28 pm
and i think the director can exhibit that leadership even reach down into organizations going awry and my hope is that the direct user do that and -- the director would do that and we would see a shapeup rather quickly should we have the president harmed all of america would not be able to forgive itself. thank you sir for your testimony today. thank you mr. chairman. i yield back. >> thank the gentleman. i'm going to recognize myself for five more minutes. you mentioned that there were others that had been drinkings that evening that went back to -- where did they go to the white house or the operations center? >> i think they would have gone back to secret service headquarters but i'm not 100% sure as i sit here exactly who that would have been. what die recall in some of the interviews the fact that what happened is they'd have a beer and a sandwich, say goodbye and then go back to work. >> this incident of the night we're talking about some of the people in addition to ogilvey and cobly went back to work.
12:29 pm
>> that's my understanding. >> how many people? >> i don't have that information. >> and that's the concern this isn't just one person making a rookie mistake. you have two people here, mr. connally with 27 years of experience mr. owing gill virk 19 years of experience, some 46 years of experience. are you telling me they didn't know that it's wrong to drink -- it's not right to drink alcohol and work the french fry machine at mcdonald's, and it's certainly not right to drink and go into the white house the white house compound, or drive a vehicle when you're there to protect the president and the first family. these people have guns. they have trust. they have people that they have to -- they can blow past and say, i'm your supervisor, you're letting me through and that what is happening here. and then when you did have that poor officer -- you have officers there trying to do the right thing. and it is your testimony that these very senior people, with
12:30 pm
badges guns, and alcohol on their breath, told them, i just came from headquarters. they didn't mention they had come from the bar did they? >> no. >> was that a lie? >> it would appear to be that way, yes. >> so it is a lie. >> yes. >> and that's the problem. they're lying to themselves, because they did take a government vehicle they should know after 46 years of experience, that the reason they're doing it on taxpayer dollars is that they're to respond at a moment's notice. we never know when something is going to happen. this is the senior most -- the senior most people in charge of protecting the white house. they are always supposed to be ready to go at a moment's notice. that's why they took government vehicles. they were taking advantage of the situation and making taxpayers pay for their little rides to the bar. that bar is so low -- the only thing raising on the bar is the

19 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on