SPEAKERS CONTENTS INSERTS
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THE ACTIVITIES OF THE FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION, PART III
WEDNESDAY, JULY 30, 1997
House of Representatives,
Subcommittee on Crime,
Committee on the Judiciary,
The subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 9:41 a.m., in Room 2141, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Bill McCollum (chairman of the subcommittee) presiding.
Present: Representatives Bill McCollum, Steve Chabot, Bob Barr, Asa Hutchinson, George W. Gekas, Howard Coble, Charles E. Schumer, John Conyers, Jr., Sheila Jackson Lee, Martin T. Meehan, and Steven R. Rothman.
Also present: Representative Sonny Bono.
Staff present: Paul J. McNulty, chief counsel; Glenn R. Schmitt, counsel; Kara Norris, staff assistant, and David Yassky, minority counsel.
OPENING STATEMENT OF CHAIRMAN MCCOLLUM
Mr. MCCOLLUM. This subcommittee will begin this hearing.
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Today the subcommittee holds the third and final hearing in a series of oversight hearings concerning the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
One year ago, on July 27, 1996, a bomb exploded in Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta, Georgia at approximately 1:20 a.m. One person was killed by the blast. Another person died as a result of the commotion following the explosion. And more than 100 people were injured.
Coming, as it did, in the middle of the summer Olympics, the explosion drew international attention. Despite the efforts of hundreds of Federal, State and local law enforcement officials, this crime remains unsolved.
On January 16 and February 21 this year, two other bombings occurred in Atlanta. Federal officials now believe that one or more persons may have been responsible for all the bombings. Yet these other crimes also remain unsolved.
One year ago today, the news media, first in Atlanta and then across the Nation, named Richard Jewell as a prime suspect in the bombing. Mr. Jewell had been employed as a private security guard during the Olympics and discovered the green knapsack which contained the bomb. Mr. Jewell reported the knapsack to authorities and helped to move spectators in the park away from the site where the bomb when it blasted occurred.
There is no doubt in my mind that Mr. Jewell's actions saved the lives and helped to significantly reduce the number of persons who were injured by the bomb blast. Despite his actions, information provided to the FBI by a number of sources caused agents to decide to investigate Mr. Jewell further and then to seek to interview him. That interview was held at the Atlanta office of the FBI.
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During the course of the interview, it appears that the agents used what has now been referred to as a ruse or a ploy to induce Mr. Jewell to agree even to the interview itself or at least to agree to the taping of the interview. During the course of the interview, Director of the FBI, Louis Freeh, gave an order to supervisors in Atlanta that Miranda warnings were to be given to Mr. Jewell. The manner in which the agents gave those warnings to Mr. Jewell has been the subject of much discussion and speculation, and is a key aspect of our hearing today.
Specifically, the subcommittee has a number of questions which it will put to the witnesses before it.
First, for what purpose was the ruse or ploy used? Was it to induce Mr. Jewell to agree to the interview itself, or to merely make him comfortable with the agents' desire to tape the interview? Second, did the supervisors in Atlanta or senior FBI officials in Washington know of the use of the ruse or ploy? Or was it authorized by them? And if they did not know about the ruse, why not, given the significance of this particular interview? And finally, who leaked Mr. Jewell's name to the media?
There are also some other broader questions to be answered today apart from the manner in which Mr. Jewell was interviewed. Specifically, why did it take until October 26 for the Justice Department to clear Mr. Jewell and inform him that he was no longer a target of an investigation? Was the manner in which Mr. Jewell's apartment searched pursuant to search warrant issued by a Federal magistrate excessive or otherwise inconsistent with the law or FBI policy? Has their been a lack of cooperation between the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms in connection with this investigation? And finally, why is it that 1 year after the bombing, and given the incredible amount of resources devoted to investigating it, this crime as yet goes unsolved?
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Let me make it clear that asking these questions is the constitutional duty of this subcommittee. Our law enforcement are often called upon to make complex decisions in a matter of minutes and even seconds. Our oversight efforts are not intended to be second-guessing, but rather to improve the policies and practices of Federal law enforcement.
We are fortunate today to have with us Richard Jewell making his first statement before a United States congressional committee on this matter. And I'd like to state publicly and for the record, in case anybody has any lingering doubts today, or watching this hearing on television today, that the Director of the FBI has informed this subcommittee that there is now no question that Mr. Jewell wasn't in any way responsible for the bombing. In my mind, given his prompt action and his assistance to the persons in the park at the time of the bombing, it is quite appropriate to characterize Richard Jewell as a hero.
We're also fortunate to have the head of the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility who headed an investigation into the manner in which Mr. Jewell was interrogated by the FBI. The full report of this investigation has not been made public, and his testimony today is key to an understanding of this issue, not only by the members of this subcommittee, but by the public as well.
And finally, we'll hear from two representatives of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. One is a senior headquarters official responsible for national security investigations at the time of the bombing, and the other is the Special Agent in Charge at the Atlanta office having the responsibility for providing security to the entire Olympics as well as for investigating this crime.
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And I should add that this Special Agent, Woody Johnson, is retiring at the end of this week after a long and distinguished career of service to his country, first in the military and then in the FBI. I might add that he has also been in charge of the Olympics' security for a number of Olympics, this not being the only one. And the only ''blemish'' that I'm aware of on that record is this particular bombing. I think that considering the considerable problems that we face in security at Olympics around the world, that accomplishment is a real tribute to Mr. Johnson.
I welcome these and other witnesses here today, and I look forward to receiving their testimony. And I will recognize Mr. Conyers, the senior Democrat on the full Judiciary Committee, who is here today for any opening statement that he might have.
Mr. CONYERS. Thank you, Chairman McCollum, and good morning to the members of the committee and our witnesses.
We consider this to be an important hearing, and I wanted to subscribe to everything that Chairman McCollum has said in his opening comments. And to that extent, I will try not to merely reiterate.
There is an additional consideration concerning the Miranda rights of Mr. Jewell. The Miranda rights, of course, is a way established in the law for a considerable period of time that would put a citizen on notice that what they are saying could be used in the course of a criminal trial against them. And this has been a hallmark of American criminal jurisprudence.
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Now in this case, Mr. Jewell wasn't ever going to be given his Miranda rights until the Director of the FBI himself intervened and ordered that that be done. And so, we would think that that was important and that it should have taken care of the matters.
But the fact is that in being given his Miranda rights, Mr. Jewell was tricked a second time because he was told that this was a video taping and that, ''We were going to read you your rights because that's what we always do when we do things like this. So this is just part of the filming.''
As they say, ''Can you believe that?'' I mean, could the FBI, ordered by the chief officer of the Federal Bureau of Investigation who gives his men a direct order, and they still do not, in effect, carry it out?
Second point, that having been revealed, a very disturbing question arises. And that is, what does the Director of the FBI do about this when he finds out?
Now, in that responsibility I am very disturbed about two other matters. One that the Director of the FBI, well-known to this committee and a friend of every person on this committee, is not here at this hearing and is not scheduled to testify. Why not?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Would the gentleman yield on that?
Mr. CONYERS. I'd be pleased to yield to my chairman.
Page 7 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. MCCOLLUM. The Director of the FBI, Louis Freeh, has testified on this before us in a hearing earlier this year, answering specific questions at some length about Mr. Jewell. Perhaps you weren't present for that hearing. And that is the reason he is not here. He is perfectly willing to come, but we didn't feel that it was necessary under the circumstances. And the third man in line at the FBI, who was the intermediary here, who can tell us what transpired in the conversation, is here.
Mr. CONYERS. Yes, but the person who might lose his job about this isn't the third man in line. It's the Director of the FBI. And as far as his testifying here before on this matter, he didn't testify about what we're going to ask him today. The reason he didn't testify is that we didn't know what we know now. So, if your alibiing for the Director of the FBI, Chairman, you can save your breath because he should be here in this room. Here is the most prominent, international, criminal case that has happened in 1997 in the United States, published all over the world, and the Director of the FBI tells the Senate that there may have been a constitutional infirmity.
May have been a ''constitutional infirmity?'' Well, question: What happens when you're not Richard Jewell and there isn't an international bombing at the Olympics? What about a citizen's rights there?
So I think, Mr. Chairman, the Director of the FBI owes the Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives a visit on this subject. And I don't care what he's doing. And I will discuss that with you and Chairman Hyde at a subsequent point in time.
So we have the most prominent case of the year and the Miranda rights were ignored on a direct order by the chief of the FBI. What about if it wasn't an Olympic bombing? Suppose you're Joe Blow and the Director doesn't call? Then what happens? So we've got a pretty serious matter here.
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We're going to examine the search warrant.
Now, is there anyone who hasn't had a preliminary law course that doesn't know that you need probable cause to get a warrant? Could there be somebody around that didn't know that? And what was the probable cause in this case? Well, one of the items was that Jewell didn't have a girlfriend. No, that's not a joke. That was what was listed in the warrant. That was probable cause for something. Listed as probable cause in a tainted warrant, Jewell wanted to be a law enforcement officer. Acquaintances described Jewell as odd. Jewell found the bomb. Well, when it started off, we applauded him for finding the bomb. So there is a case that may be made here at this hearing that there wasn't even probable cause in the warrant itself.
And so I am very pleased to join the committee here and look forward to the testimony of the witnesses.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Mr. Conyers, you're welcome. And I would say that I concur in 90 percent of what you said.
Let me say, so that the record is perfectly clear, that the reason Mr. Freeh is not here today is that the subcommittee did not request him to be here, and that the minority did not request that we request him. And in June, I think on June the 3rd, he testified subsequent to our receiving the Office of Professional Responsibility report on precisely this matter. But if we need to call him back, we will be glad to do so.
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Mr. Hutchinson, you're recognized.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate your comments in regards to Mr. Freeh's testimony because I do remember his testimony before this committee. I also understand that he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on this same issue this week.
But I think this is an important hearing, and as the premier law enforcement agency in the country, the FBI is, and should be, subject to a high level of scrutiny. This hearing, I believe, is an important part of that scrutiny. I don't consider this simply a matter of second-guessing what happened because that is always a little bit dangerous when you engage in that with 100 percent hindsight. But I believe that this review should lead to improved procedures and a more careful exercise of the enormous powers vested in the FBI. I think that is the appropriate role of this oversight hearing.
I am concerned about the discipline of the agents that were involved in this case. I hope that we hear some testimony concerning that. As someone who has worked closely with FBI agents in the past, I'm always concerned that if someone takes a fall for something that happens, I think that it's important that we delve into that to make sure that the level of discipline and that the people who were disciplined was appropriate and that the discipline went as far as it should have in this case.
So with that, Mr. Chairman, I look forward to the testimony of the witnesses, and I thank you again for holding this important hearing.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. You're quite welcome.
Ms. Jackson Lee, do you have an opening comment?
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman, and I would ask unanimous consent to submit my opening statement in its entirety in the record of this committee in this hearing.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Without objection, it is so ordered.
[The prepared statement of Ms. Jackson Lee follows:]
PREPARED STATEMENT OF SHEILA JACKSON LEE, A REPRESENTATIVE IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF TEXAS
Mr. Chairman, I want to thank you for convening this hearing to continue our examination of the circumstances surrounding the FBI's investigation of the Atlanta Olympic bombing.
In light of the botched investigation of the July 27, 1996 bombing at the centennial Olympic bombing in Atlanta, Georgia, and OPR's relatively lenient report about this investigation, it is appropriate that we carefully consider the necessity for an outside agency to oversee the FBI's internal investigations.
Let me say that I am a friend of the FBI and am grateful for the wonderful work that it has done and continues to do for American citizens, but the intrusion and trampling of the life of an innocent man is unacceptable.
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We do not accept such activity from the professionals who are charged with such an important and crucial duty as are the FBI investigators. There is no doubt that the leaking of Mr. Jewell's name by the FBI to the press was an outrageous occurrence. The smear campaign that occurred damaging the life of Mr. Jewell was completely unprofessional and a violation of the trust that we have in our federal law enforcement agencies.
I have reviewed Mr. Jewell's testimony and find it most troubling. Mr. Jewell's life has been severely trampled upon by an agency of the federal government. Mr. Jewell, it is my understanding that you believe that, ''the Justice Department cannot be trusted to investigate itself.'' I am inclined to agree with you.
I look forward to hearing from our witnesses this morning and to their reactions to the possibility of the Department of Justice Inspector General having oversight authority over the internal investigations of the FBI. Thank you.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Jewell, I think the first order of business, and I can only speak for myselfI hope that I will be able, as we proceed with this oversight hearing to speak for this Nation, but I want to personally apologize to you. And I hope that there will be others who will be raising their voice, recognizing that we must live in a Nation that is governed by laws and not by men or women.
I have studied this issue and have reviewed certain aspects of this legacy and this journey that you unfortunately had to take in this tragic situation in 1996. There have been many occasions that I have had the opportunity to proceed in an oversight role on the actions and the responsibilities of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. One in my first term comes to mind in our review of the Waco investigation, a highly-charged and very emotional and tragic incident.
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I found myself in that time frame looking to defend and to understand when law enforcement agents had to make some very difficult decisions under a very highly-charged atmosphere. And so I don't come to this with any unclean hand in my extreme criticism in the trampling and the total eliminating of the constitutional rights of a citizen of the United States of America.
The FBI has a history of many good actions. As an African-American, I can look to their behavior in the deep South in the early times of the civil rights movementsI have cited this on many occasions. I will never step away from my appreciation for the role that they subsequently played in bringing to those who had been deprived of their constitutional rights a sense of comfort and protection.
But I don't think that there is any excuse for not understanding what the Miranda rights represent; no excuse for telling a citizen that you are to be part of a training procedure, and you are a named suspect. The reason why there is no excuse is because I do realize that there are tactics, having sat for a time on a city police bench where there is a necessity to engage in enquiry to find out who did it. I think, however, that it is important to note that there are higher levels of hierarchy in the FBI that would allow this session to take place.
Let us review our actions. Let us have oversight. Let us determine whether or not this is the appropriate procedure. Is there a time now to tell Mr. Jewell and his mother that he is in fact a suspect, ask him to secure an attorney, and give him his Miranda rights?
Page 13 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC I note that our FBI Director in a subsequent series of phone calls, in the erring on the side of caution''Let's give him his Miranda rights,'' having done all that you have already done.
We wanted, and still want, to find the Atlanta bomber. We're obviously clear now that that is not Richard Jewell or his mother or his relatives or what we would imagine anyone that might have been associated with him during this time frame.
But I think that we raise a great question about the supervisory responsibility, the oversight internally inside the FBI as to how they assess situations of crisis.
My other question is, how did the lab workof which we did have Mr. Freeh in this hearing room discussing some of the failings of the FBI lab, one that we across the Nation have relied upon for its expertisehow they might have misfunctioned during this time frame.
So I raise the question of the Miranda rights and as well the FBI lab involvement; the questions of whether or not one or two FBI agents may have taken a hit or a fall for this. Let me also say that that plays into as well the question of supervision. It does not mean that we are prepared to stop at that level. It does mean that we recognize and are sympathetic to lying orderif you willsoldiers in the field, personnel, who believe that they are functioning under the cover of protection of their supervisors. We need to determine that.
Page 14 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC I believe that we need to, in fact, come away from these oversight hearingsthe Senate hearing as wellmaking it fairly clear when the Miranda rights should be offered. So there should be no haziness, if you will, in the understanding of how we should utilize those particular rights.
I would offer to say as well that I am not sure where your life is today in 1997. We have just come through another great tragedy, and that is the national manhunt for the killer of several individuals, including the prominent fashion designer Versace. Many of us weighed the great concern as to that effort and the tragedy that ensued. And so, I know that we balance the responsibilities of protecting the public with the responsibilities that we owe to individual citizens with respect to their rights.
As I conclude, Mr. Chairman, let me simply acknowledge that yesterday we funeralized the great holder of individual rights in this Nation, Justice Brennan. His death should not indicate or suggest the death of individual rights in this country.
This oversight hearing is of immenseof immenseimportance because of the emerging, diverse populations, political forts, and tragic incidences that occur day to day in this Nation. I think that it is our most highest of important responsibilities: to help, if you will, with the proper balance, sweep out the mistakes of the highest law enforcement body in this Nation, and work with them as we work on behalf of individual rights of citizens in these United States.
I would yield back by time.
Page 15 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Ms. Jackson Lee.
Mr. Coble, you are recognized for any opening comments that you may have for 5 minutes.
Mr. COBLE. I thank the chairman. I thank you, Mr. Chairman, for having staged this hearing. We welcome all the panelists.
Mr. Jewell, oftentimes we in public life, in particular, are misquoted and oftentimes our deeds are mischaracterized by the media, and the instinctive response is one of anger or bitterness. And I have always said that when we permit anger and bitterness to fester that it only hurts the one who is permitting it to fester. But if anyone is justified in being bitter and angry, it is you, sir, because you were recklessly yanked around and yanked around from pillar to post. And I think that we're all embarrassed about it. But I don't know what sort of redress we can give you. I don't know that you could repair that sort of damage.
Mr. Chairman, we live in an accelerated mode, particularly involving high-profile crimes. A high-profile crime is committed and all of the sudden everybody internationally knows about it. Well, it's, ''We've got to get a suspect,'' or ''We've got to effect an arrest,'' or ''We've got to come up with an indictment and then follow it with a prosecution, and then hopefully we'll get a severe sentence awarded,'' whether or not he happens to be guilty. That oftentimes falls to the wayside.
And if I appear a little annoyed about this, Mr. Chairman, I am. I was very annoyed about the way this was handled.
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Now, I'm proud of law enforcement people, from Federal on down. They put their necks on the line. They place themselves in harm's way. But, my friends, we have got to go back to the old-fashioned way of investigating crime. Well, what happened to thoroughness? What happened to deliberation? What happened to touching every base once, maybe twice or three times, to be sure that the people that we're going afterafter whom we're going, to be grammatically correct. I see the professor nodding in agreement when I corrected myself grammatically.
So we are concerned about it, Mr. Jewell. Agents of the FBI, we are concerned about it.
Mr. Chairman, you and the gentleman from Michigan both touched on this. Who knows how to dispense equity? The boss says to do something. Someone below him perhaps does it in a manner contrary to the way the order came down. One of my staffers may commit a problem, and it is my fault because I am the boss. The seaman on the deck makes the mistake; the skipper is in charge; he's the boss. That's what happens. The buck has to stop somewhere.
But I hope that as we go through these hearings, Mr. Chairmanand I regret that I have a simultaneous hearing starting in about a half an hour, so I'm going to miss some of this. But this has the potential of being a very significant 2 and 3 hours, Mr. Chairman, and again I thank you for having scheduled the hearing. And I yield back the balance of my time.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Coble.
Mr. Meehan, you're recognized for any opening remarks that you may have for 5 minutes.
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Mr. MEEHAN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I would just say to the gentleman from North Carolina, Mr. Coble, that you may not be sure what kind of redress might be available to Mr. Jewell, but I am sure that Mr. Jewell's attorneys have a few ideas of what kind of redress might be appropriate.
But in any event, I want to thank you, Mr. Chairman, and compliment you on having scheduled three separate oversight hearings on the FBI. Given the increasing sophistication of criminals at home and abroad, I think that it is more important than ever that the FBI function properly. And it is our job to equip the FBI with the tools that it needs while assuring that those tools are used efficiently and with due regard to civil liberties. So, I commend you, Mr. Chairman, for taking this responsibility so seriously.
I think that it is fair to say that the FBI and their actions in this particular case are not something that we can be proud of, somewhat reminiscent of the old keystone cops cartoon characters in dealing, at least, with the Richard Jewell case. The higher-ups were not told that the agents interviewing Mr. Jewell were employing a ruse. Thus, they proceeded to recommended that Mr. Jewell receive the Miranda warnings after the fact. It is difficult to maintain a ruse while reading someone their Miranda rights. Mr. Jewell naturally grew suspicious and ultimately broke off the interview.
For all of the ingenuity and the effort of a few of its agents in attempting to out-fox Mr. Jewell, the FBI has yet to capture the individual responsible for the heinous Olympic Park bombing. Its actions have, however, changed the life of Richard Jewell forever. And today he will tell us and tell the country exactly how.
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Through his accountthough this account is quite disturbing, I would caution anyone against concluding that the FBI, as a matter of course, is lawless or a lawless organization. Mistakes were made in Atlanta. They stem, it seems to me, through poor coordination under intense pressure. Hopefully, the facts will show that there was not a blatant and systematic lack of concern for an individual's constitutional rights.
It seems to me that the worst misconduct, frankly, was the leak and the leaking of the information to the press and elsewhere. And we have seen this repeatedly in law enforcement investigations where information about investigations are leaked to the press, potentially destroying the reputations of those people who may or may not be subjects.
Indeed, I think that it is important that we not forget that the FBI Director, Louis Freeh, demanded that Jewell be read his Miranda rights, even though some of the commentators involved doubt that it was necessary. Now he spoke before this committee and testified that he didn't even know that a ruse was going on at the time that he ordered his Miranda rights.
Think about that. It's actually kind of interesting. The Director of the FBI is called in to oversee, or at least to participate, and orders Miranda rights to be given and has no idea that people who work underneath him have a ruse underway in effect. That, Mr. Chairman, is frightening.
By and large, I have found that in working with the FBI in my district, they do an outstanding job. It is efficient. It is conscientious. Compliance is consistent of the demands of the Constitution. There are many agents and heroes who work in communities all across America, and I think that we owe them constructive oversight. And I hope that these hearings don't find any unfound sniping, but at the same time I think that it is extremely important that we let the public see exactly what happened in this case, because the facts of this case are very disturbing.
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I look forward to hearing the testimony of today's witnesses. And again, Mr. Chairman, I commend you for holding these hearings.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Meehan.
Mr. Gekas, do you have any opening remarks?
Mr. GEKAS. Yes. I thank the Chair.
This oversight hearing gives us an additional opportunity to review the workings of, and the duties and responsibilities of, the Office of Professional Responsibility within the Department of Justice and how it laid down guidelines, if it did at all, overall in the many, many cases that come before the FBI in which the Miranda rights are a part, and particularize it with the case at hand, with Mr. Jewell.
What is not clear to me, and what we hope to gather from the hearing, is exactly what conclusions did the OPR reach in this particular case? Did they take into consideration, for instanceor did the FBI take into considerationthat Mr. Jewell was familiar with law enforcement throughout his life, I believewe'll learn more about thatand that he might have had, if he did at all, a smattering of knowledge about the purview of Miranda rights and what they mean and how they were exercised and whether or not more should have been done to protect his Miranda rights?
All of these matters within the Office of Professional Responsibility are issues which have to be resolved in advance, so that the training of the FBI agent will take into account those errors which we are now delving into.
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I thank the Chair.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Gekas.
Mr. Rothman, you are recognized for 5 minutes if you wish, or up to that much.
Mr. ROTHMAN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
First I'd like to congratulate the chairman for holding these hearings and putting this matter into context and giving it the seriousness that it deserves. I also want to commend the ranking member for reminding us that this case is not just about the tragedy and loss to Mr. Jewell and his family, but about what could happen, and perhaps what has happened, in the history of our country and what we want to prevent happening to others.
In this case, we're examining whether one of our finest agencies, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, or some people in its employ, made errors in judgments in an extraordinarily difficult case at a very stressful time and with what I assume, without question, are the highest motives: to catch terrorist murders.
Unfortunately, Mr. Jewell was the innocent victim of their overzealousness, or so it would appear. He and his family have suffered without cause, without justification. If there is any solace or comfort that you, Mr. Jewell, or your family, can get from this horrible, terrible personal tragedy in your livesand I am sure that others have said this, but let me say this: You have made a contribution that your suffering has contributed to the well-being and freedom of your fellow Americans, and will make this country a better place, because you have caused, and your unjust suffering has caused, the Federal Government of your country of 260 million people to re-examine how it conducts its investigations.
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It has caused us to re-examine the obligations of our law enforcement personnel, even under the most serious and difficult of circumstances, and the rights of every American who are presumed to be innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt after a criminal trial by a jury of that person's peers.
I used to be the mayor of a little city in New Jersey, 25,000 people, with a fairly significant crime rate. And I know firsthand of the courage and heroism of the police officers, the men and women who put their lives on the line every single day, not knowing whether when they turned the corner there would be a crack addict willing to commit the suicidal mayhem that would end that officer's life or not. At the turn of any corner that could happen. So I know of the dangers that our law enforcement people face. I know of their zeal, their desire to put criminals behind bars, especially those who have committed acts of violence, and how on occasion they are so creative and so clever and so smart and so admirable in the way that they pursue criminals. So they have my unending and undying gratitude for their sacrifices.
But that does not excuse those who on occasion cross the line, who in their zeal subject an innocentin this case, heroicAmerican, who saved the lives of his fellow countrymen and women, and make that person out to be a criminal and destroy or almost destroy their reputation, because your reputation has not been destroyed in some ways. Your lawyers can talk about how you need to be compensated, and we should look into that as well.
But this tragedy has served your country. Sometimes that happens. I'm glad you are still alive. Sometimes there are martyrs who help their country in their death. I'm glad you're still alive.
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Mr. Chairman, I'm looking forward to learning more about how our wonderful and laudatory Federal Bureau of Investigation may have, or agents in their employ may have crossed the line, so that we can fix the problem so that it will never happen again. I'm also looking forward to learning more about Mr. Jewell's acts of heroism. And I'm also looking forward to learning how we as a Nation can try to compensate Mr. Jewell and his family for what he has suffered perhaps for all of us.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Rothman.
Mr. Chabot, if you have opening remarks, you are recognized.
Mr. CHABOT. Thank you. I'll be very brief.
There's no question that the Richard Jewell matter has not been the FBI's finest hour, and that is why I am looking forward to these hearings and hearing from Mr. Jewell, and also hearing from the FBI as to how this came about. What can we learn from it, and how do we go on from here?
Rather than go on and on in my opening statement, I will yield back the balance of my time at this time, so that we can move on with the hearing and listen. Thank you.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you.
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I see our distinguished senior member, the ranking member, Mr. Schumer is here. You are recognized for any opening remarks.
Mr. SCHUMER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and let me thank you for holding these series of hearings in your usual diligent way of conducting this committee.
I begin, first, by saying that I am a fan of the FBI. I think they do a very good job overall. I think it's very difficult to do law enforcement in many different ways. Anyone who goes and takes the little test that they give agents aboutthey show a video screen and you have to decide whether to shoot or not shoot as there are passersby and othersknows how difficult it is to be a law enforcement officer. And that is just one immediate instance. It's all the time.
So I hope that at this hearing we won't forget all the good along with bad, which we aim to correct, and not making this tower over the others.
But I came here to talk about one specific point which I think hurt Mr. Jewell more than others. I think that the Miranda warning situation can be dealt with. It was a mistake. I think that the way that the inside of the case was handled was a mistake. But to me the most damning thing that happened were the leaks. Mr. Jewell's reputation would not have been besmirched except for leaks.
And the dirty little secret is that large parts of the FBI and the United States Attorney's office leak like a sieve. Not only in this case, but in case after case after case with Director after Director after Director. That is the biggest problem. The FBI has learned this the hard way. There have been leaks coming from the FBI that have hurt the FBI in recent months as well. Well, to leak from a grand jury room is a crime. To leak information about a conversation held with a potential suspect is certainly a violation of the FBI's guidelines. The only difference in this casethe leak is every bit as wrongis that the leak got national attention as opposed to just local attention, and that Mr. Jewell proved to be the wrong person. But even if there is a conviction in the case, even if it doesn't make headlines across the country, the leaks are oftentimes criminal.
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What efforts has the FBI made to find the leaker in this case? What effort has the FBI made to find the leakers in so many other cases? I mean, a few years ago, I asked forwhen I was chairman of the crime committeeI asked for the number of people prosecuted for leaking grand jury information, whether they be FBI agents or Assistant United States Attorneys, or whatever. It is virtually none. The answer that is given is that it is hard to find the leakers. True enough. I agree. But my guess is that the amount of effort that went into finding the leakers was not enough. And I say this as somebody who has defended the FBI through thick and thin.
Maybe that can be a lesson of this case. Maybe that can be the good that comes out. Everyone saw that movienot everyone. I saw that movie, ''Absence of Malice.'' You may remember it. I see Mr. Jewell shaking his head. If you haven't seen it, go see it, because damage was doneit was a fictional account, but it had the ring of truth to itby a leak that was never undone. And by the way, our media, our good friends in the media, which will cover every misdeed of the FBI, won't cover the fact that there were leaks because they are the beneficiary of the leaks.
So we don't get anything done here. And if I have one lesson from this case, it is not anything else, but it is that the leaking, against FBI regulations, sometimes against the criminal law, should stop. And I am sending a letter to the Director of the FBI urging that a special unit be set up within the FBIthere are special units for other issuesbut a special unit be set up to go after leaks. You can't ask the United States Attorney to investigate his own assistant or her own Assistant United States Attorney for a leak when they have so many other things to do. But this is a big enough problem that it ought to be handled at the top.
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And so, I guess, Mr. Jewell, today is your day of vindication. And as Mr. Rothman and others said, you will seek whatever recompense for the damage to your reputation, and you have every right to seek it, and I wish you luck in pursuing it.
But I would say that if we're going to do some good that will have general good, so that there won't be anymore Richard Jewells, we should once and for all stop the leaking. And my plea to the Director, who I have great respect forI think he does a wonderful joband to the men and women of the FBI, who I admire and defend at every opportunity because of my natural respect for the job of the law enforcement officer, and particularly for the Nation's premiere law enforcement agencymy plea to them as well is, let's once and for all stop this terrible, terrible game of leaking information long before it is supposed to be made public, and in that way more than any other we can avoid another Mr. Jewell from being defamed.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Schumer.
I want to acknowledge that Mr. Bono is here today from the full committee. Under our rules, we do not permit an opening statement, but if you wish to submit something for the record, you are certainly welcome to do so, and we're glad to do so, Mr. Bono.
Mr. BONO. Mr. Chairman, I just want to thank you for allowing me to attend, and I am happy to be here.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. At this time, I want to introduce our first panel of witnesses today.
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I don't think that Richard Jewell really needs an introduction. We all know that you are here, and we're thankful that you came, and we're looking forward anxiously to hearing from you.
Seated next to Mr. Jewell and to the witness table is one of his attorneys, G. Watson Bryant, Jr. and I believe that two others are behind you, Mr. Bryant.
Also on the panel, on the first panel that we have, is Albert Alschuler who is the Wilson Dickinson Professor of Law at the University of Chicago. Professor Alschuler is an expert in the area of criminal justice and has written about a number of issues, including search and seizure, privacy rights and legal ethics. And he has taught in a number of the Nation's leading law schools and has served in the Criminal Division of the Justice Department. He is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard School of Law, and he is here to provide us with an expert witness perspective on this.
Today in all of the panels, I am going to ask that each of the witnesses stand and be sworn, before your testimony, to give the truth. And I would like in this caseand I believe the attorneys know this, since I think that each of them may be called upon to answer questionsif they would also stand and take the oath. So if all five of you would stand and be sworn.
Thank you, you may be seated.
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With that in mind, Mr. Jewell, you may proceed to give us your testimony. I know you have sat there quite awhile anxiously. I just want to tell you in advance that this is the way the democratic system works, and it is democratic, and we let all of these members say things, and the witnesses get anxious about it, but you have been very patient, and we thank you for coming. And please proceed to take whatever time that you deem to be appropriate. Your full statement and your written statement will be admitted to the record, without objection, and I hear none.
STATEMENT OF RICHARD JEWELL
Mr. JEWELL. Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the committee, thank you for inviting me to appear before you this morning.
I come before you
Mr. COBLE. Mr. Chairman, would Mr. Jewell pull the mike a little closer to him?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I think that maybe he needs to raise it a little bit. That's about right.
Mr. JEWELL. I come before you today not as a Republican or a Democrat. I have no political agenda. I come before you simply as an American citizen with rights just like everybody else.
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One year ago today, the FBI and the media joined together to launch an attack on me of unparalled proportion in the history of this Nation, an attack calculated to betray me to the world as some type of abnormal person with a bizarre employment history who was guilty of the Centennial Olympic Park bombing. It was all a lie.
Two days ago the Justice Department issued a written report about its investigation into a few of the unlawful acts committed by the FBI in its investigation of me. While I have not had an opportunity to study the OPR report in detail, I did read a redacted summary yesterday. I submit to you that the Justice Department cannot be trusted to investigate itself because that report is also a lie. It is filled with false statements, half-truths, and gross distortions of the truth. Reading it reminded me of reading the FBI search warrant affidavits against me. Apparently, truth to the Justice Department is simply whatever the Justice Department wants the truth to be.
Within a few days after my name was leaked to media, the FBI knew that it had a public relations disaster on its hands. The organization that prided itself on being the best investigative agency in the world had quickly, and with the world watching, pointed the Federal Government's finger of guilt at the wrong man, and they knew it within days. Not only did the FBI accuse the wrong man, its agents in Atlanta and officials in Washington actively participated and publicly humiliated me and privately violated my constitutional rights.
The media followed the FBI's lead. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution called me a ''villain,'' a ''fool,'' a ''bad man.'' They said I was like Wayne Williams, a convicted child murderer. The New York Post called me a ''village rambo,'' a ''failure,'' a ''disgraced former law enforcement officer,'' and a ''sick puppy.'' They portrayed me as a violent man, a terrorist. A talk-radio host on WABC Radio in New York City publicly demanded my execution.
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Through it all, the FBI never had the integrity to tell the world that the media was wrong, just like the media never had the integrity to expose to the world the obvious flaws in the FBI theory alleged connecting me with the bombing. It was as if the FBI and the media had entered into an unholy alliance to blame me for the bombing and did not care about the truth or my rights as an American citizen.
Members of this committee, I am here today to answer your questions publicly and under oath. But while I am here to answer your questions about what Federal law enforcement officials did to me, I am also here to ask you to commit yourselves and the resources of this committee to a legitimate investigation into the very disturbing questions raised by the FBI investigation of meunanswered questions that will remain unanswered unless an objective third party investigates the FBI and the Justice Department's conduct.
The first unanswered question is simply, ''Why?'' Why did the FBI put me and my mother through this 88-day nightmare? I know, and you now know, that it is not because of evidence that linked me to the bombing. I am an innocent man and there was never any credible evidence that in anyway linked me to the bombing of Centennial Olympic Park.
And yet, without any credible evidence, for 88 days, from July 30 until October 26, the FBI wasted millions of dollars and thousands of manhours following me, my mother, my attorneys, my friends, always with three or four cars, sometimes with as many as five or six cars, and with airplanes. The FBI followed me 24 hours a day. They followed me into restaurants, hardware stores, grocery stores, to my lawyers' offices, to my friends' homes, and to the funeral home where I went to say goodbye to a close friend who had been like a father figure to me for many years. They even followed me to my little league field where I coach football for 10-year-old kids. They illegally tapped my phone, even though they deny it. They sat in the parking lot of my mother's apartment complex, 24 hours a day, a constant and highly visible presence conveying to the public that the FBI still considered me to be the bomber.
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Did the FBI spend millions of dollars and thousands of manhours in a public relations show designed to convince the public that there was some evidence against me to justify the horrible mistake that they had made? I believe that I am entitled to have the FBI publicly explain its conduct toward me and my mother. The whole story must be told. The truth must come out.
And this is just one of the many questions which must be answered before this committee and before the public, so that they can both assess the conduct of the FBI, including not only its agents in Atlanta, but its high-ranking officials in Washington.
Who leaked my name to the media? It was not a leak by local law enforcement officials in Atlanta. News organizations all over the country knew my name before the Atlanta Journal-Constitution got its scoop by identifying me publicly by name.
FBI Director Freeh now claims that he cannot ascertain whether individuals in the FBI leaked my name. He says that 531 individuals in a dozen different agencies were aware that I was under FBI scrutiny from Sunday, July 28, to when my name was leaked to the press on the evening of July 29, according to sworn testimony from reporters of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
If Director Freeh's numbers are accurate, then you must ask, ''How could the officials in charge of this high-profile investigation allow over 500 people to learn of my name and status of the investigation within the first 24 hours after Piedmont College President Ray Clear called the FBI and expressed his unfounded suspicions that I might be involved in the bombing?'' This fact alone, if true, establishes the need to study this investigation in depth in order to avoid similar occurrences in the future.
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Who leaked to the media confidential information about me contained in the sealed search warrant affidavits? While only a handful of law enforcement officials could have been aware of the confidential information contained in the July 30 search warrant affidavits, accurate information from these affidavits was leaked to the media as early as July 31 to August 1. And the leaks were carefully selected to only provide information to the media which appeared to incriminate me.
It was not enough to just leak my name. Law enforcement officials leaked information clearly calculated to support the idea that I was the bomber. The media attributed most of these leaks to high-ranking officials in Washington. Who were these people? Why have the Justice Department and Director Freeh failed to conduct an investigation into who broke the law in leaking the search warrant affidavit information?
And you must ask, ''How extensive was the investigation into the source of the leak?'' During my 88-day nightmare, many of my friends were subjected to repeated, at times harassing, interviews by FBI agents. My friends were literally forced to agree to give lie detector tests to the FBI or stand accused by agents of not telling the truth.
I would like to know how many law enforcement officials have been subjected to FBI polygraph tests to determine which individuals sworn to uphold the law broke the law in leaking my name and search warrant information about me. Are you satisfied that the OPR report explains the knowledge and involvement of FBI officials in Washington and the Justice Department in the video training film ploy? I am not.
Page 32 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC I would like to know who saw the transcript of the interview or the videotape of the interview. And when they saw it, anyone who reviewed either the transcript or the videotape would immediately recognize that serious issues existed with respect to possible violations of my constitutional rights.
When did Director Freeh review the transcript or the videotape? One would certainly expect that the officials in Washington who were actively involved in the investigation and considered me a prime suspect on July 30 would have reviewed the transcript and the videotape within hours of the termination of that interview.
Does it bother you that the OPR report claims that the United States Attorney in Atlanta allegedly learned about the video training film ploy 2 days after the July 30 interview, but did not notify FBI officials in Washington or his supervisors in the Justice Department until 2 months later. Why does the OPR repeatedly emphasize the lack of prior knowledge of Director Freeh and United States Attorney Alexander about the video training film ploy? Does it make sense to you that these officials were actually actively involved in the question of whether I should be read my rights on July 30, but apparently did not bother to ask anyone what I was told by the agents when they asked me to voluntarily come to FBI headquarters? If they did not ask this clearly relevant question, was their failure a calculated effort to give themselves, as you say in Washington, ''plausible deny-ability?''
Why did the FBI allow the media to film live coverage of the search of my mother's apartment on July 31? Should the FBI's participation in a television show based on its day-long removal of almost every item of our personal property be condoned and repeated in the future? Should the holding of a press conference in the parking lot be condoned and repeated in the future? And remember, when forced to return our belongings, the FBI was able to make the return in less than 5 minutes, and they told my attorneys that if any one camera was present at my mother's apartment to record the return of our property, the FBI agents would simply return to headquarters with our property. Should the FBI be allowed to use the media to promote itself when it perceives that it is on the verge of success and yet demand that cameras be turned off to hide its failures and mistakes from the public? But these are a few of the unanswered questions.
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As I speak to you today, I know that some members of the media now like to refer to me as a ''professional victim'' or a ''professional plaintiff.'' Believe me when I say that they have called me worse and they are wrong again.
It is apparent that, despite all that has been said and written about me in the past year, many members of the media in this country still do not really know who I am. I am not a ''professional plaintiff.'' I am merely a man who has decided to dedicate a portion of my life to seeking justice for what happened to me and to my mother, and more importantly, to seize the opportunity to try and prevent the media and the Federal law enforcement officials from ever doing to someone else what they did to me.
I believe it was President Kennedy who often said, ''One man can make a difference, and every many should try.'' I believe that my actions on the night of the Centennial Olympic Park bombing made a difference in the lives of many people and their families. And I believe that my efforts in seeking accountability from the media and the FBI can make a difference in the lives of many more.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Jewell follows:]
PREPARED STATEMENT OF RICHARD JEWELL
Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of this Committee, thank you for inviting me to appear before you this morning.
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I come before you today, not as a Republican or a DemocratI have no political agendaI come before you simply as an American citizen with rights just like everybody else.
One year ago today, the FBI and the media joined together to launch an attack on me of unparalleled proportion in the history of this nation. An attack calculated to portray me to the world as some type of abnormal person, with a bizarre employment history who was guilty of the Centennial Olympic Park bombing. It was all a lie.
Two days ago, the Justice Department issued a written report about its investigation into a few of the unlawful acts committed by the FBI in its investigation of me. While I have not had an opportunity to study the OPR report in detail, I did read a redacted summary yesterday.
I submit to you that the Justice Department cannot be trusted to investigate itself, because that report is also a lie. It is filled with false statements, half-truths and gross distortions of the truthreading it reminded me of reading the FBI search warrant affidavits against me.
Apparently, truth to the Justice Department is simply whatever the Justice Department wants the truth to be.
Within a few days after my name was leaked to the media, the FBI knew that it had a public relations disaster on its hands. The organization that prided itself on being the best investigative agency in the world had quickly, and with the world watching, pointed the federal government's finger of guilt at the wrong man . . . and they knew it within days.
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Not only did the FBI accuse the wrong man, its agents in Atlanta and its officials in Washington actively participated in publicly humiliating me and privately violating my constitutional rights.
The media followed the FBI's lead . . .
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution called me a villaina foola bad manthey said I was like Wayne Williams, a convicted child murderer.
The New York Post called me a village Ramboa failurea disgraced former law enforcement officera sick puppythey portrayed me as a violent mana terrorist.
A talk-radio host at WABC Radio in New York publicly demanded my execution.
Through it all, the FBI never had the integrity to tell the world that the media was wrong. Just like the media never had the integrity to expose to the world the obvious flaws in the FBI theory allegedly connecting me with the bombing.
It was as if the FBI and the media had entered into an unholy alliance to blame me for the bombing and did not care about the truth or my rights as a citizen.
Members of this Committee, I am here today to answer your questions publicly under oath. But while I am here to answer your questions about what federal law enforcement officials did to me, I am also here to ask you to commit yourselves and the resources of this committee to a legitimate investigation into the very disturbing questions raised by the FBI investigation of meunanswered questions that will remain unanswered unless an objective third party investigates the FBI and the Justice Department conduct.
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The first unanswered question is simply, Why?
Why did the FBI put me and my mother through this 88-day nightmare? I know, and you now know, that it was not because of evidence which linked me to the bombingI am an innocent man and there was never any credible evidence that in any way linked me to the bombing of Centennial Olympic Park.
And yet without any credible evidence, for 88 days from July 30 to October 26, the FBI wasted millions of dollars and thousands of man-hours following me, my mother, my attorneys, my friendsalways with 3 or 4 cars, sometimes with as many as 5 or 6 carssometimes with airplanes. The FBI followed me 24 hours a day. The FBI followed me into restaurants, into hardware stores, into grocery stores, to my lawyers' offices, to my friends' homes, to the funeral home where I went to say goodbye to a close friend who had been a father figure to me for many yearsthey even followed me to the Little League field where I coached football for 10-year-old kids.
They illegally tapped my phone even though they deny it. They sat in the parking lot of my mother's apartment complex 24 hours a day . . . a constant and highly visible presence, conveying to the public that the FBI still considered me to be the bomber.
Did the FBI spend millions of dollars and thousands of man-hours in a public relations show designed to convince the public that there was some evidence against me to justify the horrible mistake that it had made? I believe I am entitled to have the FBI publicly explain its conduct toward me and my mother. The whole story must be told. The truth must come out.
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And this is just one of many questions which must be answered before this committee and the public can assess the conduct of the FBI, including not only its agents in Atlanta but also its high- ranking officials in Washington.
Who leaked my name to the media? It was not a leak by local law enforcement officials in Atlanta. News organizations all over the country knew my name before The Atlanta Journal-Constitution got its prized scoop by identifying me publicly by name.
FBI Director Freeh now claims that he cannot ascertain whether individuals in the FBI leaked my name. He says that 531 individuals in a dozen different agencies were aware that I was under FBI scrutiny beginning on Sunday, July 28 before my name was leaked to the press on the evening of July 29 according to sworn testimony of reporters for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
If Director Freeh's numbers are accurate, then you must ask: how could the officials in charge of this high profile investigation allow over 500 people to learn of my name and status in the investigation within the first 24 hours after Piedmont College President, Ray Cleere, called the FBI and expressed his unfounded suspicions that I might be involved in the bombing. This fact alone, if true, establishes the need to study this investigation in depth in order to avoid similar occurrences in the future.
Who leaked to the media confidential information about me contained in the sealed search warrant affidavits? While only a handful of law enforcement officials could have been aware of the confidential information contained in the July 30 search warrant affidavits, accurate information from these affidavits was leaked to the media as early as July 31 and August 1. And the leaks were carefully selected to only provide information to the media which appeared to be prejudicial to me.
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It was not enough to just leak my namelaw enforcement officials leaked information clearly calculated to bolster the idea that I was the bomber. The media attributed most of those leaks to high ranking officials in Washington. Who were these people? Why have the Justice Department and Director Freeh failed to conduct an investigation into who broke the law in leaking the search warrant affidavit information?
And you must ask how extensive was the alleged investigation into the source of the leak? During my 88-day nightmare, many of my friends were subjected to repeated, at times harassing, interviews by FBI agents. My friends were literally forced to agree to give lie detector tests to the FBI or stand accused by the agents of not telling the truth. I would like to know how many law enforcement officials have been subjected to FBI polygraph tests to determine which individuals sworn to uphold the law, broke the law in leaking my name and search warrant information about me.
Are you satisfied that the OPR report explains the knowledge and involvement of FBI officials in Washington and the Justice Department attorneys in the video training film ploy? I am not.
I would like to know who saw the transcript of the interview or the videotape of the interviewand when they saw it. Anyone who reviewed either the transcript or the videotape would immediately recognize that serious issues existed with respect to possible violations of my constitutional rights. When did Director Freeh review the transcript or the videotape? One would certainly expect that the officials in Washington who were actively involved in the investigation and who considered me a prime suspect on July 30 would have reviewed the transcript and the videotape within hours of the termination of the interview.
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Does it bother you that the OPR report claims that the U.S. Attorney in Atlanta allegedly learned about the video training film ploy 2 days after the July 30 interview but did not notify the FBI officials in Washington or his superiors in the Justice Department until 2 months later?
Why does the OPR report repeatedly emphasize the lack of prior knowledge of Director Freeh and U.S. Attorney Alexander about the video training film ploy? Does it make sense to you that these officials were actively involved in the question of whether I should be read my rights on July 30, but apparently did not bother to ask anyone about what I was told by the agents when they asked me to voluntarily come to FBI headquarters? If they did not ask this clearly relevant question, was their failure a calculated effort to give themselves, as you say in Washington, ''plausible deniability?''
Why did the FBI allow the media to film live coverage of the search of my mother's apartment on July 31? Should the FBI's participation in a television show based on its day-long removal of almost every item of personal property I owned and she owned be condoned and repeated in the future? Should the holding of a press conference in the parking lot during the search be condoned and repeated in the future?
And remember, when forced to return our belongings, the FBI was able to make the return in less than 5 minutes and told my attorneys that if one camera was present at my mother's apartment to record the return of our property, the FBI agents would simply return to headquarters with our personal property.
Page 40 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Should the FBI be allowed to use the media to promote itself when it perceives it is on the verge of success and yet demand that the cameras be turned off to hide its failures and mistakes from the public?
These are but a few of the unanswered questions.
As I speak to you today, I know that some members of the media now like to refer to me as a professional victim or a professional plaintiff. Believe me when I say that they have called me worseand they are wrong again.
It is apparent that despite all that has been said and written about me in the past year, many members of the media in this country still do not really know who I am.
I am not a professional plaintiffI am merely a man who has decided to dedicate a portion of my life to seeking justice for what happened to me and to my motherand more importantly, to seize the opportunity to try to prevent the media and federal law enforcement officials from ever doing to someone else what they did to me.
I believe it was President Kennedy who often said, ''One man can make a difference and every man should try.''
I believe my actions on the night of the Centennial Olympic Park bombing made a difference in the lives of many people and their families . . . and I believe my efforts in seeking accountability from the media and the FBI, can make a difference in the lives of many more.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you very much, Mr. Jewell.
Professor Alschuler, you are recognized. Your testimony will be put in the record in toto, without objection. And you may summarize or give us any portion of it that you wish.
STATEMENT OF ALBERT ALSCHULER, WILSON-DICKINSON PROFESSOR, UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO LAW SCHOOL
Mr. ALSCHULER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Justice Holmes said that hard cases make bad law. They also make bad law enforcement. Consider the case of Richard Jewell, a security officer assigned to guard the sound and light tower at a concert stage at the Olympics last summer. You have just heard Jewell's side of the story, the facts that I want to give you about Jewell's case don't come from him or his lawyers or his associates. And these facts don't come from the media. They come from an affidavit prepared by FBI Agent Diader Rosario in support of his application for a search warrant for Jewell's truck and an apartment that Jewell occupied with his mother.
According to this affidavit, about 1 a.m. on July 27, Jewell told Agent Tom Davis of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation that a number of intoxicated people were on a bench near the sound tower. They had been throwing beer cans and hassling a cameraman. By the time that Jewell and Davis reached the scene, the drunks were gone. But Jewell noticed that somebody had apparently left a backpack behind. When Jewell and Davis could not locate the backpack's owner, Davis summoned an FBI/ATF explosives team.
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This team looked inside the backpack and told Davis to evacuate the area. At some personal risk, Richard Jewell aided in the evacuation. A short time later, a bomb in the backpack exploded.
Two people were killed and more than 100 were injured, but things could have been worse. A number of people gave Richard Jewell credit for saving their lives.
As people throughout America deplored the bombing and celebrated Jewell's alertness, the FBI entered his life. Agent Rosario's affidavit suggests that the agents collected rumors about Jewell from everyone willing to talk to them. A man who knew Jewell saw him on television and informed the FBI that both he and wife had doubts about Jewell's stability. This man considered Jewell an adrenaline junkie. He reported that Jewell had been fired by the Habersham County Sheriff's Department after wrecking a police car in a high-speed chase. He also said that Jewell had resigned from a position as a part-time Piedmont College security guard after being placed on probation for ticketing cars off-campus.
Another informant said that Jewell was engrossed in his job and didn't have a girlfriend. Richard, that's very incriminating!
Two or three people said that Jewell liked to talk about guns and cop stuff. Someone offered the opinion that if the Habersham County Sheriff's Office had been more careful in preparing its psychological profile of Jewell, it would not have hired him.
Someone else declared that Jewell could have been capable of placing a bomb if he believed that no one would be hurt by it. I assume that this person came from Vienna with a degree in psychiatry. Somebody told the FBI that Jewell once owned a backpack.
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In addition, the FBI learned that Jewell knew something about explosivesno more, apparently, than a former law enforcement officer would be expected to know. The most knowledgeable informant said he had about 4 hours of training in explosives.
Agent Rosario apparently found three things suspicious about Jewell's work at the Olympics.
First, prior to the Olympics, Jewell had told someone that he would be there and that he wanted to be in the middle of anything that happened. Second, after working in the sound tower, Jewell had resisted reassignment to another post. And third, about an hour before the bombing, Jewell asked someone not to sit on a bench reserved for law enforcement personnel. Agent Rosario reported that he had not investigated whether this bench was anywhere near the place where the bomb exploded.
Now, the copy of the FBI affidavit that I read was somewhat redacted, but I believe that I have now recited essentially all of the evidence upon which the FBI relied when it sought a warrant to search Jewell's apartment. The FBI affidavit consisted almost entirely of hearsay, hearsay on hearsay, rumor, opinion, innuendo, and amateur psychology. It did not tie Richard Jewell to the Olympic Park bombing in any significant way.
If this affidavit justified the search of Jewell's apartment, anybody at the scene of a bombing who has struck some former associates as unstable, who once lost a job, and who received explosives training in law enforcement or private enterprise or the military, well, this person can expect an FBI knock at the door.
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The FBI did suggest a motive for Jewell's suspected crime. Jewell had said on television and elsewhere that he hoped to return to law enforcement work. He might have planted the bomb just so he could discover it, become a hero, and regain employment as a peace officer. Now apart from a lack of evidence to support this theory, the facts of Jewell's case were in tension with it.
It doesn't seem likely that Jewell made up that story about rowdy drunks at the sound tower. The affidavit doesn't indicate that the FBI ever did so, but it wouldn't been hard to check whether other people had seen the disturbance that Jewell reported. And if Jewell did not invent the drunks, it was remarkable that they decided to sit and toss beer cans just where he had planted the bomb, so that he had an excuse for summoning Agent Davis. Do you suppose the FBI thought the drunks were confederates of Jewell'swilling to help him get back into law enforcement by aiding this murderous scheme?
And more significantly, at the time that Agent Rosario wrote his affidavit, the FBI knew where Jewell was when he found Agent Davis and for a considerable period thereafter. It was at this time that somebody called 911 from a location three blocks from the sound tower to report that a bomb would explode within half an hour. Richard Jewell could not have made that call.
Did the FBI suppose that its suspect, this unstable loner, had confided his deadly plan for getting a job to someone else who made this call? The FBI's theory of the crime was in tension with the 911 call and other circumstances, and the allegations about Jewell, even if taken at face value, did not tie him to the crime. But the FBI found a magistrate willing to issue a search warrant. Empirical studies suggest that magistrates rubberstamp requests for search warrants, and it would have taken considerable courage to block the FBI's search of its prime suspect in a case like the Olympic Park bombing.
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According to media, the search of the two-bedroom apartment that Jewell occupied with his mother continued for more than 10 hours. Dozens of agents and a police dog examined Richard and Barbara Jewell's belongings. News cameras photographed the scene as agents carried away boxes and bags of evidenceseveral carloads and truckloads of material, according to one news account.
Now the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution should have prevented what happened to Richard Jewell. The amendment says, ''No warrants shall issue without probable cause.'' And that constitutional command has a clearer history than most provisions of the Bill of Rights. King George's officers in America used general warrants to search wherever they liked. And in 1776, less than a month before the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia Declaration of Rights proclaimed, ''General warrants whereby any officer may be commanded to search suspected places without evidence of a fact committed are grievous and oppressive and ought not be granted.''
The authors of the Virginia Declaration and later of the Bill of Rights understood the rights of British subjects. Lord Chief Justice Pratt had declared these rights in his landmark opinion in 1763 in Wilkes v. Wood. He wrote that the ''discretionary power of law enforcement officers to act wherever their suspicions may chance to fall is totally subversive of the liberty of the suspect.'' Lord Chief Justice Pratt didn't use that language about the case of Richard Jewell, but if some 18th century fortune-teller had told him about Jewell's case, he might have.
The Supreme Court's current standards of probable cause are not very demanding. The Court has overruled the leading Warren court precedents on probable cause. But even under the current standards, my view is that the FBI affidavit in the Jewell case fell short. Justice Stevens captured the all but unvarying historic understanding of probable cause when he wrote that this concept ''requires particularized evidence of wrongdoing'' before officers may make an arrest or conduct an investigative search. Agent Rosario's affidavit offered virtually none.
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We expect a lot from the FBI. We hope that our largest and best funded law enforcement agency will be a model of professionalism for State and local police departments. We hope that it will teach law enforcement officers everywhere how to combine effective policing with respect for the rights of individuals. We ask FBI agents to walk a fine line between doing too little and doing too much. We do know that their job is difficult.
I said that hard cases make bad law enforcement. And when law enforcement agents are confronted with a deadly act of terror, their first impulse is to leave no stone unturned. Their temptation to turn a stone or two without probable cause may increase as the agents sense pressure from superiors, the media, and the rest of us to solve the case.
In a case like Richard Jewell's, asking officers to defer or abandon the pursuit of thin leads and fat hunches for the sake of preserving individual rights is asking a lot. That is why law enforcement can't be left to the people who do it for a living and why the courts and Congress must oversee carefully the work of the FBI and other law enforcement agencies. We should consider the administrative, legal, political and cultural context in which these agencies operate, recognizing that the shortcomings of law enforcement may not always be attributable to law enforcement alone.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Alschuler follows:]
PREPARED STATEMENT OF ALBERT W. ALSCHULER, WILSON-DICKINSON PROFESSOR, UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO LAW SCHOOL
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Justice Holmes said that hard cases make bad law. Hard cases also make bad law enforcement. Consider the case of Richard Jewell, a security officer assigned to guard the sound and light tower at a concert stage during last summer's Olympics. The facts of Jewell's case that I will describe do not come from the media or from Jewell's friends, relatives, lawyers, or associates. They come from an affidavit prepared by F.B.I. Agent Diader Rosario in support of his application for a search warrant for Jewell's truck and an apartment that Jewell occupied with his mother.
According to this affidavit, a little before 1 a.m. on July 27, Jewell told Agent Tom Davis of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation that a number of intoxicated people were on a bench near the sound tower. They had been throwing beer cans and bothering a cameraman. By the time Jewell and Davis reached the scene, the unruly drunks had departed, but Jewell noticed that someone apparently had left a backpack behind. When Jewell and Davis could not locate the backpack's owner, Davis summoned an F.B.I./A.T.F. explosives team. This team looked inside the backpack and told Davis to evacuate the area. Jewell participated in the evacuation. A short time later, at about 1:20 a.m., a bomb in the backpack exploded. Two people were killed and more than 100 injured, but things could have been worse. A number of people gave Richard Jewell credit for saving their lives.
As people throughout America deplored the bombing and celebrated Jewell's alertness, the F.B.I. entered his life. Agent Rosario's affidavit suggests that agents collected rumors about Jewell from everyone willing to talk to them.
A man who knew Jewell saw him on television and informed the F.B.I. that both he and his wife had concerns about Jewell's stability. This man considered Jewell an adrenaline junkie. He reported that Jewell had been fired by the Habersham County Sheriff's Department after wrecking a police car in a high-speed chase. He also said that Jewell had resigned from a position as a part-time Piedmont College security guard after being placed on probation for disregarding instructions not to ticket cars off-campus.
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Another informant said that Jewell was engrossed in his job and didn't have a girlfriend. Two or three people said that Jewell liked to talk about guns and ''cop stuff.'' Someone offered the opinion that if the Habersam County Sheriff's Office had been more careful in preparing its psychological profile of Jewell, it would not have hired him. Someone else declared that Jewell ''could have been capable of placing a bomb'' if he believed that no one would be hurt by it. Someone told the F.B.I. that Jewell once owned a backpack.
In addition, the F.B.I. learned that Richard Jewell knew something about explosivesno more, apparently, than a former sheriff's deputy would have been expected to know. The informant who seemed most knowledgeable on this subject reported that Jewell received explosives instruction on two occasionsduring his training prior to certification as a peace officer and later at an in-service training session. This informant said that, all in all, Jewell had spent 4 hours of class time on explosives.
Agent Rosario apparently found three things suspicious about Jewell's work at the Olympics. First, prior to the Olympics, Jewell had told someone that he would be working at the games and that he wanted to be in the middle of anything that happened. Second, after working at the sound tower, Jewell had resisted reassignment to another post. And third, about an hour before the bombing, Jewell asked someone not to sit on a bench reserved for law enforcement personnel. Agent Rosario had not yet investigated whether this bench was near the place where the bomb exploded.
The copy of the F.B.I. affidavit that I read was somewhat redacted, but I believe that I have now recited all of the evidence upon which the F.B.I. relied when it sought a warrant to search Jewell's apartment. The F.B.I. affidavit consisted of hearsay, hearsay-on-hearsay, rumor, opinion, innuendo, and amateur psychology. It did not tie Richard Jewell to the Olympic Park bombing. If this affidavit warranted the search of Jewell's apartment, anyone at the scene of a bombing who has struck some former associates as unstable, who once lost a job, and who received explosives training in law enforcement, the military, or private enterprise can expect an F.B.I. knock at the door.
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The affidavit did suggest a motive for Jewell's suspected crime. Jewell had said on television and elsewhere that he hoped to return to law enforcement work. He therefore might have planted the bomb so that he could discover it, become a hero, and gain employment as a peace officer.
Apart from the lack of evidence to support this theory, the facts of Jewell's case were in tension with it. It seems unlikely that Jewell made up his story about rowdy drunks at the sound tower. Although the affidavit does not indicate that F.B.I. ever did so, it would have been easy to check whether other people had seen the disturbance that Jewell described. And if Jewell did not invent the drunks, it was remarkable that they decided to sit and toss beer cans just where he had planted a bomb so that he had an excuse for summoning Agent Davis. Perhaps the drunks were confederates of Jewell's, willing to aid his return to law enforcement by jeopardizing countless lives.
More significantly, by the time that Agent Rosario wrote his affidavit, the F.B.I. knew where Jewell was when he summoned Agent Davis and for a considerable period thereafter. It was during this period that someone called 911 from a location three blocks from the sound tower to report that a bomb would explode in half an hour (as in fact it did). Richard Jewell could not have made that call. Did the F.B.I. suppose that its suspect, an unstable loner, had confided his deadly plan for getting a job to whoever made this call?
Although the F.B.I.'s theory of the crime was in tension with the 911 call and other circumstances, although many of the F.B.I.'s informants apparently failed to explain the basis of their opinions and allegations, and although the allegations about Richard Jewell, even if taken at face value, did not tie him to the crime, the F.B.I. found a magistrate willing to issue a search warrant. Empirical studies suggest that magistrates often ''rubber-stamp'' requests for search warrants, and it would have taken considerable courage to block the F.B.I.'s search of the home of its prime suspect in a case like the Olympic Park bombing.
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According to the media, the search of the two-bedroom apartment that Jewell occupied with his mother continued for more than 10 hours. Dozens of agents and a police dog examined Richard and Barbara Jewell's belongings. News cameras photographed the scene as agents carried away boxes and bags of evidenceseveral carloads and truckloads of material, according to one account.
The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution should have prevented what happened to Richard Jewell. The Amendment says, ''[N]o Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause.''
This Constitutional command has a far clearer history than most other provisions of the Bill of Rights. King George's officers in America used general warrants to search wherever they liked, and in 1776, less than a month before the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia Declaration of Rights proclaimed, ''[G]eneral warrants whereby any officer or messenger may be commanded to search suspected places without evidence of a fact committed . . . are grievous and oppressive, and ought not to be granted.'' The authors of this Declaration and, later, of the Bill of Rights understood the rights of British subjects. Lord Chief Justice Pratt had declared these rights in ringing language in his landmark 1763 opinion in Wilkes v. Wood. Pratt wrote that the ''discretionary power'' of law enforcement officers to act ''wherever their suspicions may chance to fall'' is ''totally subversive of the liberty of the suspect.'' Lord Chief Justice Pratt did not use this language about the case of Richard Jewell, but if some eighteenth century soothsayer had told him about Jewell's case, he might have.
Page 51 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Probable cause in 1997 is not what it was. Some time ago, the Supreme Court overruled the leading Warren Court decisions on probable cause because these decisions had strained too hard to provide standards in an area not susceptible to them. As the Court explained in Illinois v. Gates in 1983, ''P]robable cause is a fluid concept . . . not readily, or even usefully, reduced to a neat set of legal rules.'' Probable cause does not mean ''more probable than not,'' and the Gates Court used phrases like ''substantial basis'' and ''clear indication'' to suggest the evidentiary justification needed. Moreover, one year after Gates narrowed the concept of probable cause, the Supreme Court limited the remedy for violations of this requirement. It concluded in United States v. Leon that it would no longer exclude unlawfully obtained evidence in most of the situations in which magistrates violated the Fourth Amendment directive that ''no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause.''
Even under the Supreme Court's reasonably tolerant standards, my view is that the F.B.I.'s affidavit in the Richard Jewell case fell far short. Justice Stevens captured the all-but-unvarying historic understanding of probable cause when he wrote that this concept requires ''particularized evidence of wrongdoing'' before officers may make an arrest or conduct an investigative search. Agent Rosario's affidavit offered virtually none.
Other witnesses will, I believe, discuss the deceptive interrogation of Richard Jewell by F.B.I. agents and what I regard as the agents' inexcusable failure to follow the order of the Director of the F.B.I. to give Jewell the Miranda warnings. The Director's order surely meant real warnings, not an improvised ''let's pretend'' substitute. Other witnesses may discuss the unconscionable leak of information about the F.B.I. investigation to the news media. The F.B.I.'s treatment of Richard Jewell was not a moment in the agency's annals to be celebrated in F.B.I. Building tours.
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We expect a great deal from the F.B.I. We hope that our largest, best-funded federal law enforcement agency will be a model of professionalism for state and local police departments. We hope that it will teach law enforcement officers everywhere how to combine effective policing with respect for the rights of individuals. We ask F.B.I. agents to walk a fine line between doing too little and doing too much. We know that their job is difficult.
I said at the outset that hard cases make bad law enforcement. When law enforcement agents are confronted with a deadly act of terror, their first impulse is to leave no stone unturned, and the temptation to turn a few stones without probable cause increases as the agents sense pressure from superiors, the media, and the rest of us to solve the case. If the one-in-ten-thousand chance that Richard Jewell set off the Olympic Park bomb had materialized, we would, I suppose, be praising the F.B.I.'s brilliance rather than criticizing its failures, and the agents who concocted their radio-talk-show theories of Jewell's plotting would be heroes.
In a case like the Olympic Park bombing, asking officers to defer or abandon the pursuit of thin leads and fat hunches for the sake of preserving individual rights is asking a lot. That is why law enforcement cannot be left to the people who do it for a living and why the courts and Congress must oversee carefully the work of the F.B.I. and other law enforcement agencies. We should consider the administrative, legal, political, and cultural context in which these agencies operate, recognizing that the shortcomings of law enforcement may not be attributable to law enforcement alone.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Professor Alschuler. And we thank you, too, Mr. Jewell, for your testimony.
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We're going to go to a series of questions now under what we call the 5-minute rule, where each member of the panel gets to ask questions for that period of time for either of the witnesses. And I will recognize myself first for 5 minutes.
Professor Alschuler, I just want to comment at the outset that what you said today it seems to me to be right on point. It is damning of the affidavit in this case for the search warrant, and, unfortunately, it is reflective of the second time in the last couple of years that this committee, this subcommittee, has been involved in a case where a law enforcement officer has issued a sworn affidavit that has gone to court for a search warrant or for some action by the court which has been terribly prepared. We saw that in the case of Waco with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. And we just hope that it isn't replicatedand I am pleased that you came today if for no other reason but to make the point that you just made in hopes of discouraging and deterring other law enforcement affidavits that might be as poorly prepared as this one seems to have been.
Mr. Jewell, when the FBI arrived at your house on July 30, 1996, did you understand that they wanted to interview you concerning the bombing?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir. They said they were going to talk to me about the bombing, but that they wanted me specifically to come to their office for a training video for the agents in training at Quantico, Virginia.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. But you knew that they were going to interview you. That's why you went down there, right?
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Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And from the media reports on that day, you had a pretty good idea that you were a suspect at that point. Did you not?
Mr. JEWELL. No, sir. I had not seen the paper or anything to that effect. Some press outside my home, while I was getting ready for work, had asked me if I thought that I was a suspect, and my answer to that was that everybody that worked down there was going to be investigated by the law enforcement that was handling the investigation.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. You started to tell us, just then, and you alluded to it in the testimony, but didn't really say what were you told, exactly, by the FBI agents when they asked you to go down for that interview on July 30? Tell us what you recall being told.
Mr. JEWELL. They came into the home and showed their identification and told me that they wanted me to go to the office. They had come to do a formal interview, that I had not been formally interviewedwhich I had not. I had been interviewed on several other occasions informally. They wanted to, while the interview was going on, they wanted to do a training film video for the Quantico agents.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. So they didn't tell you that you were coming down there to do a training film interview? They told you
Page 55 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir, that's what they said
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I know, but I'm gettinglet me get this very clear. They told you that they wanted to come down for the interview and that while you were there they wanted to do a training film interview. I'm generally sympathetic to your situation, but I think that we've got to put the facts straight out here
Mr. JEWELL. They put it together.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I hear you. But they
Mr. JEWELL. They
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Go ahead.
Mr. JEWELL. They put it together. They said that they were going to do an interview, but they were going to do a training filmthey were going to film it while they were doing it and make a training film video out of it, is what they told me.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right. Fair enough.
At any time before you spoke with your lawyer after the interview had begun, did you tell the FBI agents that you wanted the interview to stop until you could speak to your lawyer?
Page 56 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JEWELL. When they pulled out the Miranda form, things began to click in my head as to that they weren't exactly doing what they said they were doing. And I made a statement to the effect that I would like to call a friend of mine that is an attorney and talk this over with him.
At that point they became very aggressive towards me to the point of ''Well, why do you need to call an attorney? Have you done something that you feel you need to call an attorney about? We thought you were a hero. Is something bothering you that you need to tell us?'' This went on for several minutes.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. So they triedthey discouraged you
Mr. JEWELL. That's right.
Mr. MCCOLLUM [continuing]. Tried to discourage you from calling your attorney?
Mr. JEWELL. They were concerned.
One, they tried to discourage me from calling. And two, they were concerned as to why did I want to call.
Being in law enforcement myself, when I saw that form, I knew something wasn'tthey weren't telling me what they were thinking.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. But they ultimately allowed you to call your attorney, right?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir, they did.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And I want to make this clear: At no time before that point in time when they started to give you the Miranda warnings did you tell the FBI that you wanted the interview to stop so that you could speak to an attorney? No time until it clicked in your head did you do that, is that correct?
Mr. JEWELL. What I said to them was that I wanted to talk to an attorney if this was notif the training film was not what they were saying it was.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. At what point did you tell them that, at the time that the Miranda warnings began?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir. Right in that generalI can't give you an exact time
Mr. MCCOLLUM. My only reason for asking is because I am trying to get a time sequence in general. I'm not trying to get you into every little second
Mr. JEWELL. Right.
Page 58 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. MCCOLLUM. But up to that point, when the Miranda warnings were given, at no point did you say, ''I want to call my lawyer.''? And I think that's consistent with what the OPR report is telling us. I'm just tracking this through. And I do want to hear, and we just did hear, what you went through at that point.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Mr. Chairman, if I could just interrupt for a minute
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Yes, Mr. Bryant, certainly.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. There is a video and there is a transcript that puts down exactly what happened during this interview, and you do understand that Mr. Jewell at this point is speaking from memory?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I do understand that
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. I want to make the point that the transcript and the video, they are the highest and best proof of what happened during that episode.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Well, we'll understand that, Mr. Bryant, and we thank you for pointing it out. But I do want to hear what Mr. Jewell recalls himself and what his state of mind might have been at the moment.
And the last question that I want to ask: Did the FBI agents tell you that you were free to leave at any time when they began this interrogation?
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Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir, they did.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right.
Mr. Conyers, you are recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. CONYERS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I'll reserve my time.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Do you wantI guess I'll go next to Mr. Chabot then. You are recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. CHABOT. I thank the chairman. I just have a few questions.
First of all, I just would comment, Mr. Jewell, relative to your attorney, Mr. Bryant. I watched with interest all this, just as many other Americans did, as this whole thing unfolded. And you are fortunate to have such a bulldog in your corner. It was a very strong advocate on television in your defense and made a lot of, I think, Americans wonder as to whether what was unfolding was true.
Mr. JEWELL. He's a great guy.
Page 60 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. CHABOT. I haven't been an attorney myself in practice. I can empathize sometimes with attorneys, because a lot of people love to hate lawyers. But I think that he did a wonderful job for you on television, in particular.
A couple of things that you said in your testimony that I just wonder if you could expound upon a little bit. You said that the Justice Department report is a lie. Would you tell us why you say that is a lie?
Mr. JEWELL. Well, I haven't seen the whole report, sir. All I've seen is a redacted summary.
Mr. CHABOT. Whatof what you did see, what makes you say that it is a lie?
Mr. JEWELL. Well, I don't knowI could start at page 1 and go through the whole thing, if you want.
Mr. CHABOT. No, I really don't wantis there anything in particular that stands out in your mind that you disagreed with particularly strongly? Or perhaps your attorney could mention one or two things.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Yes, I could say that I lived through this. I'm the lawyer that called the FBI that is referred to on I think it's page 9 or 10 of this thing. And I can tell you that they say that I called the FBI and that they had some misunderstanding about the purpose of my call when I called at 7 p.m. on July 30. And that theywhoever it was, the receptionist did not know that I was a lawyer, that I was looking for somebody that was supposed to be in the building. At least that is the implication from reading thisthat they thought that they were looking for somebody that was an employee, and since Jewell was not on the employee list, they just told me that he wasn't there.
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That isn't what happened. That is inaccurate. If I'm being polite, I'd say it is inaccurate. I think that it is a distortion of the truth. I won't go to the motives for it.
The fact is, that I called them at 7 o'clock. My legal assistant was sitting next to me when I did this. She heard my side of the conversation. I identified myself as ''Watson Bryant an attorney for Richard Jewell. I understand that he is in your custody. I would like to speak with him.'' The receptionist sent me to the command center.
They don't mention the fact that I went to the command center in the first call. I know that I did. I have the phone log from my bill. It was a 7-minute call. That's how long I sat there with these people. They put me on hold. I go to the command center. The command center says, ''Okay, we'll look around.'' Again, I identified myself. ''I'm a lawyer. I represent Richard Jewell. You've got him. I want to talk to him.'' The denied that they had him.
Mr. CHABOT. Not to cut you off, but I've only got 5 minutes, and I have a couple of other questions.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Okay. That's all wrong, okay.
Mr. JEWELL. Also the part that
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. They lied to me about him being there. That's what they did. They interferred with his right to counsel. They interviewed this man for 30 minutes after I tried to get in touch with him by lying to me about his presence in the place. That's unforgivable.
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Mr. JEWELL. They alsothe part where theyreading of thegiving me of the Miranda form where they went in and out of the room and made calls to Mr. Freeh, that section of it is completely out ofit is not in the right order that it happened.
Mr. CHABOT. Okay. Let me ask you all this: You said that the FBI knew that you were the wrong man within a matter of days and yet did nothing to let the public know that or let anybody else know that. How do you know that they knew you were the wrong man within a matter of days?
Mr. JEWELL. There were agents that while they were searching my mother's home that were telling me that they knew that I didn't do it. They were on the cell phone to Mr. Freeh and telling Mr. Freeh that there was nothing there for them to take me to jail.
Mr. CHABOT. You heard them talking to Mr. Freeh?
Mr. JEWELL. I heard one of the agents talking to someone on the phone, saying that there is not enough here to take him, and then when he got off the phone, he looked at the other agent and said, ''That was Louis.''
Mr. CHABOT. You also said in your testimony that the FBI illegally tapped your phone, though they deny it. What evidence or what makes you think that they were tapping your phone?
Page 63 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JEWELL. I called a friend of mine at the Habersham County Ambulance Service to speak to him about something concerning myself and Mr. Bryant. The very next day, he was interviewed by two agents of the FBI that came up and questioned him for over 2 hours and then searched through a vehicle thatI was a member of a high-angle rescue team; they searched that vehicle looking for backpacks.
There was no way, sir, that they knew who that person was. I had not talked to him in over 6 months. That's how I know that they had my phones tapped. There is no other way, sir, that they could have gotten that information, because it was only between myself and that man on the other end of the phone that I talked tothat and some several instances.
Mr. CHABOT. Thank you. That yellow light means that I have less than a minute to go here.
My final question is thisand as the chairman said, I have a lot of sympathy for what happened to you in this position as well. And what I, as a policymaker here, and as a Member of Congress, one thing that I'm kind of dealing with and we're trying to resolvewe've had a number of high-visibility criminal-type cases in the past few years. Whether it is the Jon Benet Ramsey case which is going on right now, where nobody has actually been charged, but there are all kinds of people that are under suspicioussome people think that the parents were involved. Some people think that relatives or fellow coworkers, or whomever, but nobody has actually been charged yet, but everybody is kind of under suspicion right now.
And you've got the OJ case; you've got the McVeigh case where people were actually charged and have been in one case found guilty and in the other case found not guilty, but then in a subsequent civil caseI ask unanimous consent for one additional minute, Mr. Chairman, because I see the light is red.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. Without objection.
Mr. CHABOT. Thank you.
And then the second OJ case, of course, in a civil case, he was found liable.
But in a very high-visibility case, as we had here, the public is very interested. You know, they are trying to find out who did this dastardly deed. In this case, they evidently got the wrong person, and as Mr. Schumer mentioned, there were leaks involved. And perhaps Mr. Alschuler may be the best person to answer, perhaps the attorney, maybe you, Mr. Jewell, but at what point does the public become awarethrough the natural processwhat did the FBI, what should we as the government learn from this matter learn from this matter where you were unfairly brought to the world as the perpetrator of this and it turns out that you didn't do it? I mean what should we learn from this? Any of you gentlemen
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. I would say that, first of all, that you should learn from this that these people need to learn how to keep a secret. They don't know how tothey leak like a sieve.
I want to ask, what in the world would have happened if some fool, believing what he'd read in the paper, had come up and killed this man or killed his mother? Then we'd bewe might not even be here, I guess. But I tell you one thing: People that knew him would be damn mad that these people got murdered because some people in the FBI and in the United States Attorney's office can't keep their damn mouths shut. That is unforgivable. You have lives at risk.
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When you release information of this sort in a case like this or in fact in any other case, you never know when revenge is going to come out here. They put these people's lives at risk because of their wanting to be on the front page, as the heros that found the bomber within a few days after the thing occurred. That's one thought.
The next thing is just what this gentleman is talking about. You know, nobody would have really thought thatthey would have not paid much attention to this suspect and profile and all of this other psycho-babble had it not been for the search of their home, which in my view is totally unjustified. And I think that this fellow here agrees with me.
The judges need to enforce the Fourth Amendment. They can't be apathetic. They have to be diligent and police need to pay attention to the Bill of Rights. And that's what's happening here, and I thank you all for doing this because you are bringing a whole lot of attention to our freedom and liberty in the Bill of Rights.
Mr. CHABOT. Thank you
Mr. ALSCHULER. In our justice system, it seems to me that the amount of attention a case gets in the media has more effect on what happens to it than anything in the Constitution of the United States.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Chabot.
Ms. Jackson Lee, you are recognized for 5 minutes.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thank the chairman very much, and I do want to acknowledge again the importance of these hearings, and Chairman McCollum, I thank you for several of these that have occurred.
Gentlemen, allow me toas I indicated to you, I was certainly going to pursue the sort of moral litmus test offered to this Nation by Justice Brennan as it relates to individual rights. Let me just, for the record, lay out one of his earlier cases when he served as a member of the appellate court in New Jersey some years back before he ascended to the Supreme Court: a simple case that had the question of whether or not defense counsel should have received a signed copy of the defendant's confession. This case, where, first of all, the prosecutor was ordered to give that to the defendant's lawyer, and they appealed and the appellate court agreed with the prosecutor, but, yet, Justice Brennan, in his eloquence, indicated that that was inappropriate and said this. He noted that an ordinary person would be startled to be denied a copy of a document that he had signed and concluded that, ''denying pre-trial access to the confession because the defendant might commit perjury imperiled our bedrock presumption of innocence.''
This now is a defendant. And I lay that on the table, if you will, because Mr. Jewell, as I understand it, Mr. Alschuler, was not yet a defendant in this process. You have made that very clear.
Just about a session ago, we were in this august room and had a Republican proposal that offered to remove or to lighten the Fourth Amendment requirement in terms of a warrant for a search, and to argue that because of the necessity to eliminate crime we might go to a good-faith exception. Although I have called on many instances for hearings on the militia in this Judiciary Committee, I sided with those who recognize that a good-faith exemption, or exception, might be extremely contrary to individual rights and freedom.
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The reason why I raise that is because I would like your comment, Mr. Alschuler, on this whole issue of the affidavit. You mentioned sort of idiosyncracies of Mr. Jewell. And I know that some have criticized the affidavit under Waco, where I defended the FBI. I'd like your impressions, having read that affidavit compared to this affidavit, so we won't look like we are not recognizing the importance of getting to the bottom of a case, the importance of a search warrant.
Can you tell us the distinction between what you may have perceived in reading the affidavit for the Waco incident and the one that they had for Mr. Jewell?
Mr. ALSCHULER. Well, I did read the Waco affidavit some time ago. I don't think that I'm really prepared to comment on that one in any detail
Ms. JACKSON LEE. But did you consider it more detailed?
Mr. ALSCHULER. I did consider it a substantially stronger affidavit.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. What would you feel the failings were in the one with Mr. Jewell?
Mr. ALSCHULER. The biggest problem was that nothing tied him to the bombing. It was all psychological profiling, rumors about small troubles that he'd had in the past, and some rank speculation about possible motives for committing the crime.
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We have been, and still are, in an era when people think of support for civil liberties as support for criminals. That is unfortunate. The case of Richard Jewell illustrates that it's just not true. And weakening the exclusionary rule sends an unfortunate message to law enforcement officers. The Supreme Court has said that in a case like Jewell's, as long as it is the magistrate who violates the Fourth Amendment, we won't apply the exclusionary rule, and
Ms. JACKSON LEE. So
Mr. ALSCHULER [continuing]. There is today essentially no review of a magistrate's decision to issue a search warrant.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. What you would thenwhat I would glean from your words is that we certainly need to look to the tightness of an affidavit with substantial or at least reasonable explanations for why a warrant should be issued. It certainly a basic for our oversight, and we really need to be looking in that direction as well.
Mr. ALSCHULER. That is what the Constitution says.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I appreciate that.
Mr. ALSCHULER. The Constitution says, ''No warrants shall issue without probable cause supported by oath or affirmation.'' That's why we get affidavits like Agent Rosario's. The Constitution requires it.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. Let me move and reclaim my time, and thank you to Mr. Jewell. You mentioned something, along with Mr. Bryant, that really raises my concerns. And Mr. Chairman, I offer this with the greatest respect for the First Amendment. However, I am somewhat concerned about seemingly the intermixing of the FBI and the media in this instance. And so, I would just like, Mr. Jewell, as you went down for that initial taping, and I assume video cameras, internal video cameras were there as you were taping.
Did you have an excitement that you were going down to help? Is that what you thought that you were doing at that time when you went down?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, ma'am. That's all I wanted to do, was to help catch the person that did this.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. And so, while you were talking, were you sort of relaying in a very calm manner, or an open manner, any of the questions that they were asking you at a certain point?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, ma'am. I had nothing to hide to those gentlemen.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Did they ask you, Mr. Jewell, whether you had ever been a member of the militia?
Mr. JEWELL. I don't recall that, ma'am.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. Were you ever a member of the militia?
Mr. JEWELL. No, ma'am, I have not been.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. So, therefore, you didn't bring that to the table, that might have encouraged at that time any additional exploration?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, ma'am.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Once you left the hearingnot the hearing, but that inquisition, how fast did the media hit you? Or had the media been hitting you before that?
Mr. JEWELL. They were at my house when we left to go do the training film video. There were probably about 30 or 40 of them there. When I got back, there were about 150 or 200.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Right after that time frame?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, ma'am.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I would just like toI know that the light is on, Mr. Chairman. I would like to raise two questions quickly. If they are able to answer it, I would appreciate it.
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That is, the coordination between the FBI and local law enforcement and whether there was a breakdown of any coordination which resulted in local law enforcement being scattered, and as well, the whole question of, Mr. Chairman, the involvementas I indicated my respect for the First Amendmentbut the involvement without any guidance or without any direction of the mediameaning taking one thing and then going beyond that expression and then expanding and embellishing on that. Did you sense that Mr. Jewell?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, ma'am. They took what information they could, and if it wasn't glorious enough for their story, they made up the rest of it.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. And how did local law enforcement treat you?
Mr. JEWELL. Most of the local guys, the Kett County police, which is the county that my mother resides in, they had known me because they had worked with me in the past, most of those guys were good to us during this. But I still haven't been able to find a job in my career. I was a deputy for 6 1/2 years before this occurred. So it has ruined me. I still have friends in law enforcement, but it has ruined my career.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Ms. Jackson Lee.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thank you, Mr. Jewell.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Mr. Barr, you are recognized for 5 minutes.
Page 72 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. BARR. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Bryant, earlier you went on at some length about the publicity and leaks to the media, and so forth, and you used the word ''they.'' Who are you referring to when you use the word ''they?''
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. I am referring to whoever it was that leaked the information about Richard Jewell being the suspect. I think that those people were in the FBI. I don't think thatI kind of wonder, you know, if they can't find out who leaked this information about Richard being a suspect, and in addition to that, and I think even more importantly, who leaked information from the sealed search warrant affidavits to the media that showed up in some of the articles that we have. If they can't find out who did that, how in the world are they going to find out who bombed this park?
Mr. BARR. Well, I'm not sure that that follows.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Well, doesyou know they don't pay anyhow are they going to do it? Are they going to look for it, is that
Mr. BARR. I think that the investigation is a little more complex than you perhaps might. It is a very complexbombing cases, in particular, are among the most difficult to investigate successfully by the very nature of
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Well, you would think that with the small universe of whoever leaked something
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Mr. BARR. No, it's not
Mr. WATSON BRYANT [continuing]. That they would be able to find it.
Mr. BARR. We may disagree also about the size of that universe. This was a very unusual situation with the Olympics being in Atlanta. And the number of different law enforcement agencies, and indeed quasi-law enforcement agencies, and indeed even private-security companies that were involved in one aspect or another, there was a great deal, perhaps an unprecedented number of people that were involved in all of these decisions and had access to a lot of the information, not necessarily all of it, but a lot of it. And I know that it is very unfortunate that information is leaked, whether it is in this investigation or any other. And I can understand your indignation about it. You represent Mr. Jewell.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. As an American, I'm indignant about it. This could have been me
Mr. BARR. Well, some of the language you used previously, the cuss words, and so forth, I think indicate a great deal of indignation on your part. I don't think that is called for in these hearings, but that is your personal preference.
All I'm trying to get at is, before we blast the FBI or blast this person or the other, that we need to realize that this is a little bit more complex, and trying to make it simplistic, that we know who did it or whatnot, I'm not sure really serves us. What we ought to be looking at perhaps is taking a more comprehensive look at the entire system herewhat made this investigation and all the events surrounding it unique?and trying to work a little bit more positively to try and rectify a very unfortunate situation here. That's my only point. And I don't know that getting indignant about ityou know, it may be part of a defense strategy
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Mr. WATSON BRYANT. No
Mr. BARR [continuing]. But I'm not sure that really serves a real legitimate purpose if we're searching for the truth here.
Mr. WOOD. May I be recognized for just a moment?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Yes. Please state your name for the record, so we'll know.
Mr. WOOD. Certainly. I am Lin Wood, and I am one of the attorneys for Mr. Jewell.
With respect to Representative Barr's observations, I simply wanted to point out, perhaps in a less indignant manner because I was not there those first 3 days with Mr. Jewell and Mr. Bryant when they were actively being subjected to this tragedy, the two things that we would like to point out to the members of the committee.
One is our concern about the explanation of Director Freeh that he cannot find the source of the leak of Mr. Jewell's name because over 500 people in 12 different law enforcement agencies were aware of it in the first 24 hours after he surfaced as a potential suspect. That troubles us. That's an awful lot of people, and it seems to us that there should be greater control in that environment.
Page 75 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Secondly, and I think more importantly, we have very real concerns about the fact that search warrant affidavit information was selectively leaked to the press within 24 hours of the affidavit being presented to the magistrate. Those leaks were accurate. When we finally saw the affidavits, we went back to The Washington Post stories of August 1 and August 2, and the information was accurate.
It is hard for us to believe that 500 people had access to the search warrant affidavits within the first 24 hours of their issuance. We believe that that is a small circle of people, and if you really want to find out who leaked that information selected to prejudice Mr. Jewell, I don't believe that the investigation would be that difficult.
Mr. BARR. And that is a very legitimate point. There are different types of information that were leaked, and I'm not sure that we can even tell precisely the motivation behind everyone of those leaks. It may have been to prejudice Mr. Jewell. It may have been for some other purpose such as self-aggrandizement or whatnot. We know that there are various motivations, and I'm not sure that any of us are really in a position yet to attribute specific motivation to it.
But another point that I would like to make, that I think that you all will probably agree with, and that is that whatever fault there is that lies hereand certainly I think that everybody involved recognizes that this whole thing didn't progress as any one party or individual or organization would have liked it to have progressedthat I'm not sure that it is really fair to lay the blame all at one particular agency. I think that there was tremendous political pressure exerted by a lot of different entities here, whether it was the city of Atlanta, whether it was the FBI, whether it was some other law enforcement agency. And perhaps one thing that hopefully will come out of these hearings, Mr. Chairman, that may help us with regard to future massive events like the Olympic bombing and focusing on the security aspect of it, is to do a heck of a lot better job in the beginning focusing on how security is to be maintained and who has access to information delineating very, very clear lines of authority and communication, and then a much, much tighter non-politicized, to the extent that that is possible, mechanism.
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So I think that this a very important purpose that, very frankly, goes beyond any one individual. And I appreciate the witnesses' efforts to get at those answers as well.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Barr.
Mr. Meehan, you are recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. MEEHAN. Mr. Chairman, just to follow up on this whole issue of leaks, I think that all of us have to step back and look at the way that investigations are being conducted all across America, and let's be realistic here. There are leaks taking place by law enforcement all across America. I don't know how any of us could follow the investigations that take place, whether they are conducted by the FBI or the United States Attorney's office, and United States Attorneys' offices all across the country, or if we look at the commitment we have made to hire special prosecutors to conduct investigations. Regardless of where you side on the whole Whitewater investigation, can anyone really look at the investigation of Kenneth Starr over the 2 1/2 years and say that there haven't been an incredible number of leaks?
So we have an issue here in this country about whether or not the constitutional rights and reputations of those who are subjects of investigations are entitled to some kind of protection. And the fact that 531 people within law enforcement agencies knew that Mr. Jewell was a suspect, or allegedly a suspect, so they can't find out, is unacceptable.
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Investigations are being leaked continually in this country. And somewhere along the lineand this is an egregious example of a victimbut somewhere along the lineI mentioned this in my opening statement, and Mr. Schumer had indicated perhaps a special unit in the Justice Departmentperhaps a special unit of nearly every law enforcement agency. This is a matter ofsomeone wrote a book ''Blood Sport''but let's be realistic. I spent some time in prosecution for a number of years. I don't recall any major investigations within a law enforcement agency to determine who leaked the information. I can't point to very many. I'm interested in, Mr. Alschuler, whether or not you can cite examples.
My experience has been seldom does the personor just the fact that information was leaked in a United States Attorney's office, in the Office of the FBI, in the office of prosecutors anywhere, where people get all upset. The response is always the same, 531 people knew within 24 hours in this case. Usually the response is, ''Well, it could have been the defense attorney. It could have been a clerk. It could have been some court personnel. Well, we had witnesses before the grand jury; maybe the witnesses did it. You can't blame us.'' And it is the same response boilerplate all across the country.
So I think that we ought to use the experiences here and use the fact that this is an egregious abuse to look and really consider how criminal investigations in this country are conducted because leaks are a matter, in my opinion, of standard practices in United States Attorneys' offices all across the country. Usually, it is the cases that have some kind of press-worthiness. The press isn't in the case; probably they are not going to leak information on that particular case. If you have a case that is getting national attention, well, that is the case that probably will be leaking like a sieve.
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Can I have a response? Is this happening? Can we be honest about this?
Mr. ALSCHULER. I don' know of investigations into who has leaked information that have been successful. And I think that lawyers in particular need to learn more about their responsibilities. It is entirely possible that some of the leaks in the Jewell case came from the United States Attorney's office rather than the FBI.
This is anecdotal, but I was looking at Chris Darden's book about the O.J. Simpson trial. In the course of this book, Darden describes everything that happened before a grand jury that he ran involving one of Simpson's friends, Al Cowlings. It is damaging, gossipy stuff. And grand jury proceedings are supposed to be secret. Somehow Chris Darden didn't know that he was violating his legal responsibility when he spread what happened in the grand jury room to the public.
We have a rule in this country that we don't restrain the media. Instead, we try to restrict the participants in the process. We issue gag orders all the time to lawyers involved in criminal cases. But they often don't work. The people subject to the gag orders manage to get the information to the media, and they are never caught.
Mr. MEEHAN. Welland I don't have any idea who leaked this particular case to the mediawe never know who leaked the case to the media. My point is that it just seems that there are never investigations. There isn't a consciousness that there ought to be in not only United States Attorneys' offices, but the FBI to leaks of information. And let me suggest to you that I even think that some committee hearings, that Members of Congress have from time to time leaked information out that shouldn't have been leaked out. My point is that I think that for all us, in looking at this instance, ought to look at how we conduct criminal investigations in this country and make the necessary adjustments.
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I did want to ask Mr. Jewell, relative to the FBI tapping your phone, did the FBI say that they didn't tap your phone? Did you get any response, or did the lawyers get any response to whether they claim they ever tapped the phone?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. We asked the Assistant United States Attorney, John Davis, point blank whether or not there were wire taps on Richard Jewell's telephones in connection with the final interview that he gave them in October of 1996. They were, by agreement, they were to give us transcripts of all conversations that anybody had had with Richard Jewell or statements that he had given prior to him entering into that interview. And we asked him whether or not there were any more, for example, wire taps, and he kind of looked funny, and then said, ''No.''
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you very much, Mr. Meehan.
Mr. Hutchinson, you are recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I noted that when Director Louis Freeh testified over on the Senate side, he indicated that since the Atlanta bombing incident he has instructed the Bureau's 11,000 agents not to use deceptive ploys in getting people to waive their constitutional rights. I think that the Director certainly took the correct step in this regard, but it is flabbergasting to me as a citizen, but even as a former Federal prosecutor, that we have to issue an instruction or that it is not already a matter of policy that deception should not be used as a ploy to get people to waive their constitutional rights. This seems basic to me. The whole purpose of advising people of their constitutional rights is to make them aware of their right to be silent, the right to have an attorney, and deception can have no part in that.
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I did want to ask the Professor a couple of questions in regard to this. I also noted that there have been some Supreme Court decisions that have allowed the use of strategic deceptions by law enforcement officials. Are you familiar with those cases, Professor?
Mr. ALSCHULER. Yes, and that is something that this committee could do something about.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. I want to ask you a question, though. When you say that we could do something, are you speaking of deception in regard to waving constitutional rights?
Mr. ALSCHULER. Yes.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. Okay. What would you suggest that we do about that?
Mr. ALSCHULER. I would not forbid all deception in police interrogation. I'll tell you another story.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. Well, I want toI've got some questions that I really need to ask you.
Mr. ALSCHULER. All right. I would not prevent all deception, but things like misrepresenting people's legal rights should be absolutely forbidden. Misrepresenting the state of the evidencetelling people falsely that they flunked the polygraph examination or that some scientific evidence shows that they are guiltyshould also be forbidden. We've had cases where those interrogation tactics have produced false confessions that we found out about later. I think that Congress could do a lot.
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Mr. HUTCHINSON. I think that is something we need to look into, and I agree with you, but on the issue of strategic deceptions, Mr. SheehanI believe I'm pronouncing your name rightthe report concerning this bombing indicated that the videotaping of the interview on pretext that the tape would be used for training, indicated that was not improper. And I want to ask you, do you agree or disagree with that conclusion? That is simply the deception in regard to using the interview as a training device to get Mr. Jewell to relax. Do you agree with Mr. Sheehan?
Mr. ALSCHULER. I don't think the deception violated the Constitution of the United States under the precedents as they exist. Richard Jewell was not in custody and was not formally entitled to the Miranda warnings.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. And so the crux of the problemand I think that is where the real issue isis the credible deception that is used in the giving of the Miranda warnings in this case.
Mr. ALSCHULER. Yes. The deception raises ethical issues even if it doesn't raise legal issues. It was interesting to me to read Senator Specter's statements in the paper yesterday. He said, ''Gee, it was so hard to get Director Freeh to admit that this was a violation of Richard Jewell's constitutional rights.'' I don't think that it was a violation of Richard Jewell's constitutional rights. But everybody who talked about it seemed to assume that it was.
Well, Congress, like the courts, has a role in protecting individual rights. If, as everyone assumed, this deception should be a violation of rights, Congress can make it a violation of rights.
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Mr. HUTCHINSON. And I think that is exactly the reason that we have these hearings, to lead us in the right direction of protecting our constitutional rights.
In regard to the search warrant, this troubles me as well. You have correctly analyzed this and the weakness of the affidavitbut I know that the magistrate signed off on that. Was this a Federal magistrate or a Federal judge?
Mr. ALSCHULER. I haven't seen the search warrant.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. It was a Federal magistrate.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. A Federal magistrate approved the probable cause, and Professor, you pointed out that sometimes they give great latitude and deference to the FBI, particularly in a sensational case such as this. I understand that, but, in addition, would not there be a procedure for a United States Attorney or an Assistant United States Attorney to review this search warrant prior to submission to the magistrateand how far up the FBI chain did the review go? Do you know, Professor?
Mr. ALSCHULER. I don't know.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. Mr. Bryant, quickly.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. I don't know, but I would like to say that the Federal magistrate in this case as well as the United States Attorney, I think, both work for Mr. Barr when he was the United States Attorney for the northern district of Georgia.
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What you have is a prosecutor, the United States Attorney, going to a former associate in the United States Attorney office who has now been made a Federal magistrate. It's almost like it is a little club.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. Well, that doesn't bother me. I mean you have
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. It scares me a little bit.
Mr. HUTCHINSON. You have people and you have relationships in society. That's going to happen. It should not vacate your responsibility to ethics to the constitution
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. You are exactly right. I agree with that.
Mr. HUTCHINSON [continuing]. Because of those relationships, and I wouldn't want to imply anything from those relationships. But my concern is that you have not only a magistrate, but you've also got the review process in the chain, and I think that there's a number of people that dropped the ball in not just the giving of constitutional rights, but also in the search warrant.
My time is expired, and I thank the Chairman.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. You are quite welcome.
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Mr. Rothman, you are recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. ROTHMAN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I hope not to take the full 5 minutes.
I have said a lot about the injustice and danger that was imposed upon Mr. Jewell and his family, and I mean that sincerely. And I hope that we learn from this as a Nation.
But I detected from the Professor's remarks, much of which I agree with and respect, some tone of derision with regard to the creation of a suspect's profile by the law enforcement authorities, and I wanted to explore whether I was hearing that correctly, because in my very limited experience, sometimes law enforcement officers don't have much to go on, and a lead that seems somewhat farfetched at first, a reed that seems too slim at first, ultimately turns out to be very productive and helps solve a crime.
So I'm wondering if the creation of the psychological profile of the suspect, while it may seem farfetched, is worthy of such derision when pursuing these leads, and if there is a distinction between that effort versus the deceptive practices to get Mr. Jewell to waive his constitutional rights versus the leaking of information to the media and versus the failure or the apparent failure of the FBI to timely and completely and publicly declare Mr. Jewell no longer a suspect and an innocent of this terrible crime.
Mr. ALSCHULER. I don't have any objection to the FBI investigating someone and finding out about his background and trying to construct a psychological profile. My problem is treating that alone as sufficient to justify a search of his home. I think that you always need something more than profile evidence to amount to probable cause.
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Mr. ROTHMAN. In theif reasonable constitutional scholars do disagreeand I don't know if they doas to whether or not this was sufficient probable cause to justify the warrant, wasn'twell, to constitutional scholars maybe that was the worst thing to happen. But for many people, the worst thing that happened was that after this search, when there was a national desire to find the culprit, that once that it was determined as a result of this search that Mr. Jewell couldn't possibly have been the perpetrator of this terrible crime, that immediately then there should have been this public disclosure that he was innocent. And that it was that failure, after the search was conducted, that was the graven of the tragedy as well as the circus-like nature that was permitted at the search itself.
Mr. ALSCHULER. As I recall, when the FBI finally cleared Richard Jewell, they said something like, ''Pending further evidence, we have no reason to think that he's a suspect.'' And the media, as I recall, reported that even this grudging concession was almost unprecedented, that the FBI rarely, if ever, makes a public statement acknowledging a mistake. I think you are right; when the F.B.I. has made a mistake, they ought to be ready to say so promptly and forthrightly.
Mr. ROTHMAN. Thank you, Professor.
Mr. Chairman, I have been asked and would like to yield the balance of my time to Ms. Jackson Lee, who apparently has additional questions.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. You have the right to do that, so certainly.
Page 86 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Ms. Jackson Lee, you may complete the time that is left.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The bell is going off, gentleman, so please forgive us while certain things are being acknowledged.
Let methere seems to be a great deal of differing of opinion. I don't want to say ''conflict'' because I did hear the comment from Mr. Alschuler saying that we could correct what we perceive to be a problem. But let me try to plod through shades of gray.
Mr. Bryant, I have experienced, or at least I can offer great compassion and empathy and indignation. So feel free in any hearing that I might be in to offer indignation. I think that is fair and reasonable.
I happen to think that there was an issue that can be debated reasonably on constitutional violations, and I said that I was going to continue to raise as a sort of moral litmus test, the words of Justice Brennan. I realize that this case is distinctive. But in a case, INS v. Delgado, Justice Brennan said in referring to Terry, ''the essential teaching of the Court's decisions in Terry that an individual's right to personal security and freedom must be respected even in encounters with police that fall short of full arrest has been consistently reaffirmed.''
Now I understand that the FBI may be suggesting that Mr. Jewell came in voluntarily. Mr. Bryant, you were not there, but help me understand. I would imagine he came voluntarily. I asked him previously, was he thinking he was being helpful? Wouldn't there have been a time in the process of coming voluntarily that he was not voluntarily aware, or he didn't have the knowledge, that he had moved across the line of being something else, and therefore his constitutional rights might have appropriately kicked in at that point?
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Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Yes. I think that Richard was confused about the purpose of the interview and you can tell that from reading the transcript, at least those parts that we have seen and the part that we copied while we read the transcript last October.
I think thatyou know, all that they had to do was tell the truth. ''Richard, we want to have a formal interview with you. We think that you might have had something to do with this, and maybe we don't, but we need to Mirandize you, okay?'' That's it, that's all they had to do and talk to the guy. He wanted to help. He thought that he might unknowingly have information that could have helped these people find this killer. And he wanted to do all that he could do. He was glad to be over there to help these guys.
And if they had told me that, I would have said, ''Okay, let's go talk to these guys.'' But the fact is that they were deceptive from the get-go with Richard Jewell. They misrepresented, really, the purpose of the interview. They misthey triedthey fumbled around trying to Mirandize him. They didn't tell me the truth about his whereabouts in their building when I first called. After that, I had Don Johnson tell me that he wasn't a suspect. Yet I can read in this report here that it says that he was a suspect the day before. It was one thing to the next
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Let me ask JewellMr. Jewell, would you have been frightened by the Miranda warning or do you think that you would have still felt able to
Page 88 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. MCCOLLUM. Ms. Jackson Lee, the time has expired.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thought when the red light went out, Mr. Chairman, I'm sorry.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. The red light has been on
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thought it was when it went out.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. No, ma'am. But I will
Mr. CONYERS. I will wait until later to ask questions.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Mr. Conyers may get his time later.
I want to get the 5 minutes of time questioning for Mr. Gekas before recess. We're all going to come back, and we'll get to continue, and maybe some time can be yielded
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thank the chairman for his indulgence.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Mr. Gekas, you are recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. GEKAS. I thank the Chair.
Page 89 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. Jewell, did you feel that your Miranda rights were violated in this episode?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir.
Mr. GEKAS. You are a former law enforcement officer who himself during that time became familiar with the presentation rights to a suspect, and how it was to be conducted; is that correct?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir.
Mr. GEKAS. So when you went for this interview, you were convinced in your mind that they had nothing on you; you were innocent?
Mr. JEWELL. That's correct.
Mr. GEKAS. And harking back to your knowledge of the Miranda rights, you knew that you could demand the right to counsel and assert yourself on Miranda rights right from the start, did you not?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir, I did, but
Mr. GEKAS. In what way were they violated? In your mind, you said that you thought that they were violated; your rights to Miranda were violated.
Page 90 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JEWELL. They falsely portrayed it as part of the video training film. They tried to tell me that it was part of the training film video and that it more or lessthey weren't really giving me my Miranda rights, but that they had to read it because it was part of the training film that they were doing.
Mr. GEKAS. What did you have to fear from that?
Mr. JEWELL. Well, I knew that they were lying to me when they said that. You don't read somebody's
Mr. GEKAS. In what wayhow did that violate your right to seek an attorney? You're a law enforcement officer, former; you knew about the Miranda rights, how that played out. What was it about the training film ploy on their part that you felt prevented you from exercising Miranda rights?
Mr. WOOD. If I might interject since I think it seems to be more of a legal question, with all due respectthe Miranda rights must be given by a law enforcement officer in a meaningful way. Now, I suggest that there's a difference
Mr. GEKAS. Is it also a thesis that when a law enforcement officer, one who knows law enforcement, knows about Miranda rights, who might himself may have recited them, would know more and would have a lower standard by which the full extent could be understood about the presentation of Miranda rights?
Mr. WOOD. I don't agree with that. To me
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Mr. GEKAS. Has that not been part of case law in the past?
Mr. WOOD. I do not find case law that would indicate that you would get the same appreciation, be you law enforcement or lay person, from the difference between being told, ''We are reading your rights, sir,'' and the difference with ''We are going to ask you to sign a form waiving your rights because we need to have you do that to make this look like,'' I believe the quote was ''a real-live interview.'' The appreciation of seriousness
Mr. GEKAS. No one is asserting that Mr. Jewell should not have been granted Miranda rights. I am trying to get at his understanding of where his rights were violated, and he says that they were violated because the video ruse was being employed. That's what's hard for me to understand because he was former law enforcement officer. The ruse itself could not be, in my judgment, violative of his Miranda rights. That's whatbut Mr. Wood, while you were there, you stated, did you not, on Saturday on ABC that the involvement of Mr. Freeh, Director Freeh, has not been fully disclosed?
Mr. WOOD. Absolutely, I believe that.
Mr. GEKAS. What facts do you have that you can present to this committee to that effect?
Mr. WOOD. Well, I think that we can first look at just the fact of common sense.
Page 92 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. GEKAS. Do you have any facts that are of record that would indicate that Mr. Freeh knew more about this investigation and was possibly more involved than the record shows?
Mr. WOOD. I would be glad to go over what I have in terms of my concerns about Director Freeh's involvement with you.
Mr. GEKAS. Do you have factual information?
Mr. WOOD. We have sought to obtain copies of information about Mr. Jewell, and we have been unable to get that information, particularly with respect to the OPR report.
But my concerns about Director Freeh are several-fold, and I would be glad to go over those with you.
Mr. CONYERS. Would the gentleman from Pennsylvania
Mr. GEKAS. I request formally that you present to the chairman and to the members of this committee all the information that you have, every scrap of information that you have about what involvement Mr. Freeh had in this whole thing that was not made public
Mr. CONYERS. Would the gentleman from Pennsylvania
Page 93 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. WOOD. If I might give you one factual example, we have a copy of the FBI agent's newsletter that was published in the spring of 1997, which is, in fact, a publication of the FBI agents. That newsletter indicates that in Washington the interview of Mr. Jewell was being micro-managed by the managers, and in fact, during the course of the interview, the Director himself submitted a question which he wanted posed to Mr. Jewell. That is a fact that is at odds with the rendition of the OPR report that we have seen.
Mr. GEKAS. Well, we can't sort that out at this moment. We want to have the opportunity to analyze what was the full extent of the meaning of the answer on your interview on ABC.
Mr. WOOD. I'll be glad to supplement
Mr. CONYERS. Would the gentleman from Pennsylvania yield?
Mr. GEKAS. I shall.
Mr. CONYERS. Thank you very much, sir.
I think that one of the ways that we might get at the distinguished gentleman's question is to invite the Director of the FBI subsequently to a hearing that we might have after this one.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I would be willing to join in that.
Page 94 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. GEKAS. I yield back the balance of my non time.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Gekas.
We do have two votes on the floor. It probably will take us anywhere from 20 minutes to 30 minutes. So we'll know what the recess time is. We do have more questions and more panelists yet to ask questions. So, we indulge your patience, and the subcommittee is in recess.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. [presiding] The subcommittee will come to order.
When we recessed, we were near the conclusion of the first panel of this investigative hearing, and I had just finished recognizing Mr. Gekas. At this point in time, I believe that Mr. Conyers, who had passed at the beginning of this hearing, has been recognized to question this panel.
And I recognize you, Mr. Conyers, for 5 minutes.
Mr. CONYERS. Thank you, Chairman McCollum.
To Mr. Jewell or his counsel, has the Federal Bureau of Investigation or any of their representatives apologized to you for their mistreatment of you?
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Mr. JEWELL. No, sir.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. No, sir.
Mr. CONYERS. Any amplification on that?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. They don't apologize to anybody.
Mr. CONYERS. That's your experience? [Laughter.]
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Well, it's not only my experience; I think I've been told that. I don't remember when and where, but we should be very happy for what we got, which was a no-target letter. We wanted a no-subject letter, which is what they told us they were going to give us, but in the final analysis that was taken.
Mr. JEWELL. I think in the last few years, especially in the government and the media, there has been a direction that they don't apologize when they do something wrong. And I don't know why. I mean, there's nothing wrong with saying you're wrong when you do something wrong and taking credityou know, trying to make it right.
Mr. CONYERS. Well, apology is in the tradition of great American activities. I mean, I do it all the time. [Laughter.]
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Nobody's perfect. In fact, you respect people who say, ''Hey, look, I messed this up; let's go on.''
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Mr. CONYERS. Yes. Well, in consultation with our chairman of the committee, we may have an opportunity to extend an invitation to the Director of the FBI, certainly not at this hearing, and we want to hear what his representatives have to say, and I certainly do, too.
But, assuming Chairman McCollum extends this invitationand I know it will be quickly accepted by the Director of the FBIwould you, Mr. Jewell, be willing to come back and just sit in the room asI'm envisioning this as an ex-chairman, so this is not in my hands directly. But, assuming that Chairman McCollum invites Mr. Freeh to the hearing, he'd be the only witness, and he would have as much time, as many hours, as he needs to go into everything that he has ever thought about this sorry episode. But would you be willing to be in the room to listen to him with your counsel, if such a hearing were scheduled?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir, I would likeneed to convey with my counsel, but I would love to hear what the man has to say.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. Mr. Conyers, I'd like for his mom to be here, too.
Mr. CONYERS. I would like to extend that invitation to her as well.
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir.
Page 97 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. CONYERS. Absolutely. And your wife, too; she'sokay. That's right.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. You can read that in the search warrant affidavit. [Laughter.]
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, that's in the search warrant affidavit.
Mr. CONYERS. That's right.
Well, that's where my head is, is that weyou know, I mean, we can go over these details. Professor Alschuler and the attorneys have provided more detail about this case than all of the Federal reports and GAS that I've ever seen about this. You know, when you get down to it, if you're telling the truth, it's very simple and straightforward, isn't it? You don't have towe don't want narrative prose or we're not looking for skilled orators. All we want is, hey, what happened? And here is the body of law, and we apply it to every situation. This is what this country is built on.
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir.
Mr. CONYERS. The Jewell case could happen to anybody, as you found out.
Mr. JEWELL. It still can, sir.
Page 98 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. CONYERS. That's exactly what I'm afraid of. That's what's bothering me now.
Mr. JEWELL. It should scare every American because it can still happen.
Mr. CONYERS. Well, you know, the reason I think it might can still happen is because yours was not a low-profile case. I mean, everybody, even in the FBI from the lowest rank to the highest, knew that this case would subsequently be examined in every detail. I mean, you've got to give them credit for a certain amount of intelligence. Now this was going to happen, no matter what.
Now what happens when you're Joe Jones in Paduca and the FBI says, ''We think he did it.''?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. That's where we hope to make a difference, Congressman. We hope that they'll use this as a lesson to help advance the rights of every American.
Mr. CONYERS. And that's what we're trying to do. This is this committee's job: oversight. We oversight the Federal Bureau of Investigation; that's our job. We don't harass the FBI. We don't pick on the Director. We don't second-guess him, what he should have done, but we do apply what they do against what the law is and determine if there should be some changes.
Page 99 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Maybe there's a break in the chain of command here. What do I know? Maybe somebody doesn't take the Director seriously when he says, ''Mirandize the suspect,'' and they say, wink, wink, ''Okay.'' I meanand this is a high-profile case. You wouldn't think that the Director would then have to go back and place another call and say, ''Did you do what I told you to do?''
I mean, this isn't a mom-and-pop store operation. The FBI is the official Federal police for the United States Government, operating here and abroad. It's very serious business. And although I respect the fact that the Director of the FBI testified on the Senate, we're in the House, and we have just as mucharguably, more, but at least just as muchoversight authority as the Senate does. And so that's where I'm coming from.
I am very pleased that you have made the decision, Mr. Jewell, to come before this committee. I compliment the chairman for that. We're very privileged that the professor, Professor Alschuler, would join us from the University of Chicago, and we're pleased that you're here.
And I thank the distinguished chairman.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you very much, Mr. Conyers.
We're not going to have a second round of questions, but if we have a follow-up question or twoI know Ms. Jackson Lee particularly wanted to ask another questionI'll permit that latitude. I'm not going to run on for 5 minutes, but you've got a little bit of the floor here, if you want to ask that question that I cut you off on before we went to vote.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Chairman, I do thank you for your kindness.
Let me just join in with the ranking member and the chairman's acquiescence or recognition that I do think it's important that we have Mr. Freeh and that we qualify these hearings to emphasize that this is a fact-finding hearing; this is an oversight hearing. We want to be able to be postured to make things better.
Just for my information, Mr. Bryant, what is your specialty?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. I am a business lawyer primarily.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Not criminal defense?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. No, ma'am. I brought in Jack Martin, who is a very fine criminal lawyer, to take point on the criminal aspect of this case.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I appreciate it. Is that Mr. Martin in the audience or not present?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. No, Mr. Martin's back in Atlanta, I guess defending people, and
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right.
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Mr. WATSON BRYANT [continuing]. These folks are civil litigators
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right.
Mr. WATSON BRYANT [continuing]. Taking point on some of the civil cases that we've found.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Let me, then, just ask two follow-up questions. One, the items that were taken from your household of yourself and your mom, where are those items now?
Mr. JEWELL. Those items have been returned. We submitted awhen they were returned to my mother, she was told by agents of the FBI that if the items were damaged, to submit a voucher to the FBI, and that those items would be reimbursed.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Has that occurred?
Mr. JEWELL. No, it has not.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Did you have an inventory and you knew what had gone out and you knew what came back in?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, ma'am, they took an inventory when
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. How long did it take for those items to come back?
Mr. JEWELL. It took 11 hours for them to take them out and it took 5 minutes for themunder 5 minutes to bring them back to the house.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. But was the delay 2 days, 3 days, 4 days, overnight?
Mr. JEWELL. They had them until about a week before I got the clearance letter.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Oh, so youit was days?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. They had them for nearly 3 months.
Mr. JEWELL. Over 2 months.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Over 2 months.
Mr. JEWELL. We had to go purchase a lot of new items because they took some of them.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Bryant?
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Mr. WATSON BRYANT. They conditioned the repayment or payment for the damages upon a release, and I would not give a release.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I see. Let me
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. We'll deal with that later.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Let me conclude by simply saying that we will debate this issue of individual rights and whether constitutional infractions and violations were made. I think there is sufficient debate and sufficient positioning by Justice Brennan that says that we've had some major constitutional infractions on this issue.
Interplaying in that, Mr. Bryant, is the leaking concept, and my question then becomes your sense of where we might further explore. We've said Director Freeh. We've talked about an internal process that looks to whether items are leaked. I think my colleague, Mr. Meehan, said how difficult that might be. Where do you place the media itself in this whole media frenzy posture? Knowing that any one of us might be tempted in our respective responsibilities to respond to questions, where do you place that in terms of this committee's oversight to investigate that aspect as it relates to the individual rights process of a citizen of the United States, and in particular in a criminal case?
Mr. WATSON BRYANT. I'm not sure I understand the question.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. How much should we explore the media involvement by way of its connection or receivingand maybe the civilor I don't know if a civilian libertarian lawyer would like to respond, but, in any event, in the way of receiving information and then reporting information, how much should we as an oversight committee explore that issue?
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Mr. WATSON BRYANT. I learned a lot from Jack Martin with respect to the media. You just don't tell them anything. If you don't say anything, you're not going to get in trouble. As soon as you open your mouth, as soon as you let them get in front of you, they will weasel something out of you. That's what they do. It could beLin, do you have any thoughts on this?
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Would you care to just respond?
And I thank the chairman very much for his indulgence.
Mr. WOOD. I would only say, just generally, that I think that the point is well taken, and I do think that there should be some review in this case of the media's involvement and the interplay between the media and Federal law enforcement officials. It's very difficult here to know whether the media was following the lead of the FBI or whether the FBI was following the lead of the media, or whether the two together didn't know who to follow. So I think there's a real question here about how we're going to review situations where you have this almost joint effort by the media and the FBI, as opposed to what I think should be more of a healthy relationship of skepticism between the two.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thank you for that insight.
I know Mr. Alschuler wanted to answer. Mr. Chairman, I don't know if you'll indulge him, but if he won't, then I'llif you have any comments, I'd appreciate them in writing.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. Anything you want to respond to very quickly, Mr. Alschuler?
Mr. ALSCHULER. Well, we have had a hands-off attitude toward the press, and perhaps we should reconsider that attitude at a time when papers like The Dallas Morning News are publishing attorney-client confidences in the Oklahoma City case. The media plainly are part of the problem, too.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, and thank you, Ms. Jackson Lee.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Thank you very much. Mr. Chairman, I offered an apology to Mr. Jewell. Let me expand that and extend that apology to his mother, Mrs. Jewell. Thank you.
Mr. JEWELL. Thank you, ma'am.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Let's see, I was going to turn to Mr. Barr, if he had any questions, but I understand he doesn't have any. I just have a couple of quick things I think we need to tie together here, Mr. Jewell, Mr. Bryant, and Professor Alschuler, and then we'll excuse you as a panel.
In your testimony earlier today, you indicated, Mr. Jewell, that one of the things that was wrong with the Office of Professional Responsibility to the FBI's report was that when you went out of the room, you said things were in the wrong orderwhen they went out of the room, I should say, to apparently take a telephone call that led to your Miranda warnings. You didn't explain that, and I'm wondering if you could explain it for us.
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Mr. JEWELL. The information that I read in the redacted copy of the OPR report that I reviewed just briefly yesterday was not in the correct order that it happened. Now I have not seen the official OPR unredacted 88-page report.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Well, how would
Mr. JEWELL. If I'm able to read that, maybe it is in a different context in that report, but in the redacted report it is not in the correct order it happened, and it made it seem, the way they've put it in there, it makes it seem like they tried to bethey did not do it in the way that it is in that report. They are trying to whitewash how they did what they did.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. In the Miranda warning part of this?
Mr. JEWELL. The part
Mr. MCCOLLUM. What led up to it and
Mr. JEWELL. Right up to it, beginning of it, and then right after it, when my attorney was trying to reach me on the phone. There was about a 45-minute period there where they went in and out of the room about three or four times, and they were getting direction, I'm assuming from what the report says, from the people in Washington that they had direct contact with, the people that were coming from the airport, from the Behavioral Sciences Unit, and they were trying to figure out how to keep Mr. Bryant from getting in contact with me.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. Were you aware, or made aware, of the fact that they were trying to keep Mr. Bryant from getting in contact with you at any point or did you
Mr. JEWELL. I had no information about that until the evening when Mr. Bryant came to my home and informed me of what happened.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. When did you first, in this process, talk to Mr. Bryant? At what stage did you talk to him? Was there a point when you did?
Mr. JEWELL. I talked to him during the training film fiasco at the headquarters of the FBI. He finally, by star-69ing his phone that I had called at home, which is able to returnit was the same number that he had just tried to call me at, and they told him that I wasn't even there 30 minutes before, and I had been there for 2 hours.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Well, let me get this straight, so I just want toagain, I realize we can review a tape, and I'm not trying to get you into a box, and there are obviously some things that won't be as clear today as they might have been the day after it happened
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM [continuing]. But I'm just trying to get the picture of the order of all of this generally in my mind.
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Mr. JEWELL. Okay.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. They got a call at some point or something happened to cause them to go out of the room
Mr. JEWELL. Sir, I don't have a copy of the actual transcript in front of me. Your committee should have a copy of that. And like I said, it has been a year. If you will read that transcript, it does not coincide with what the OPR report says happened.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. That's fair. And I'm not going to, again, try to put you in any more of a spot. I just want to run by this real quickly to see if I'm generally right about it, without putting you into specifics.
So at some point this interview was interrupted, and the FBI agents went out of the room. They were back and forth three or four times, you've indicated, over a period of about 45 minutes. It presumably, based on everything else we've seen and heard, was because of this discussion that went on with headquarters in Washington and the request of the Director of the FBI to give you Miranda warnings.
At some point the interview resumed more or less normally. During this period of time, or right thereafter, I gather, you made the request to talk to your attorney?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir.
Page 109 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. MCCOLLUM. Was that before or at the end of that 45-minute period where all this going in and out happened, or do you recall?
Mr. JEWELL. It was during that 45-minute period when they actually brought the Miranda form in
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And you didn't
Mr. JEWELL. I told them that ifwhat they were doing was not what they were saying; I needed to contact my attorney, and that's when they started asking me the questions that I advised you of earlier in very evasive means. And that is when I attempted to contact Mr. Bryant first, was not able to contact him directly. I called his parents. I was on the phone for about 5 minutes trying to track him down.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. But at some point before you actually talked to him, then, did you resume the normal review, even though you hadn't talked to him?
Mr. JEWELL. Yes, sir, I had nothing to hide.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right. And approximately how longagain, approximatelyafter you made this call and effort and the interview was resumed, once the interview, the regular interview, was resumed, was it before you did get to talk to Mr. Bryant?
Mr. JEWELL. It was probably 45 minutes to an hour after I first started trying to get a hold of him that he finally was able to talk to me.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. So there was a good period of time when you were doing the interview without his being present and without your talking to him after you made the request to talk to him?
Mr. JEWELL. That is correct.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Mr. Wood, I just want to clarify one thing with you, if you could take the microphone again. You were answering Mr. Gekas' question about your comments last Saturday on the TV show about Director Freeh, and I don't want anybody to go out of the room today without a full concept of this. Certainly, I would like, as he asked you to, to present any factual evidence, corroboration of your assertion that Freeh was more involved than apparently we've been led to believe up to this point. But you didn'tyou started to answer it a couple of times, and you never really did get a chance to answer. I think Mr. Gekas unintentionally interrupted you.
Could you tell us what leads you to this conclusion and what we're talking about?
Mr. WOOD. Well, we received sometime ago a copy of the FBI agents' newsletter, which, as we understand it, is a publication actually put out by the FBI agents presently in the Bureau, and I think also sent out to former retired agents. There is a story in that newsletter which details the interrogation or interview of Mr. Jewell of July 30. In that newsletter, it is factually stated that, during the interview, while the managers in Washington were managing, that the Director even submitted to them at that time a question for Mr. Jewell that he wanted him to answer with respect to whether he thought the bombing might be an effort to attack law enforcement officials. As I read the redacted summary of the OPR report yesterday, I noticed that there is what I perceive to be an equivocal statement about when that question, or a similar question, may have been posed by Director Freeh.
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I think my comments, if I rememberI didn't see the ABC news Saturday nightI believe my comments have been along the lines that we have concerns about Director Freeh's involvement, and we do. We would like to know exactly what Director Freeh knew and when he knew it. Knowing factually that Director Freeh is a former Federal judge, a prosecutor, a lawyer, as well as an FBI agent, it concerns us that we have evolving over time information that seems to indicate that there was more and more involvement directly by Director Freeh than we were led to believe at least when he first began to speak about the Richard Jewell matter.
Our concern is that, one, if Director Freeh was actively involved in this interrogation, which I think would be somewhat unusual, but nonetheless let's assume it's not, if he was actively involved in discussing whether Mr. Jewell should be Mirandized, and then actually sometime thereafter ordering the Miranda rights to be given, it is simply somewhat bothersome to us that this would be done in conversations with the U.S. attorney in Atlanta, and we assume with higher-ups in the FBI, supervisory capacity in Atlanta, and no one would provide the information to the Director about the circumstances surrounding how Richard Jewell got to FBI headquarters. It is bothersome that the question was not asked. Or maybe it was. We don't know.
I think our position with respect to Director Freeh has been we would like to knowand perhaps your committee can give that information to us, through a subsequent appearance by Director Freehwe would simply like to know what he did know about this, when he knew it, and what his involvement was. It is the specific factual information about his placing a question to Mr. Jewell during the interview that leads us to believe that there may be some greater involvement.
Page 112 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC We also have read recently that there was a direct phone line between Atlanta and Washington, and we don't know whether that phone line was actually transmitting the interview as it took place, either by telephone or by video.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Well, we, the committee has asked a number of questions to which Director Freeh has responded concerning precisely these questions. They may not be as complete as you'd like. And if you haven't seen the transcript, we'll be glad to provide you the transcript of the hearing of June the 3rd, where I personally asked him questions of this nature, and I will review those questions, and, of course, we'll have an opportunity in the second panel here today to explore the degree to which this whole process unfolded.
But, nonetheless, I wanted to hear what you had to say, and I appreciate very much your putting it on the record.
Mr. WOOD. Thank you. Thank you very much.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I want to thank all of you for being here today. Professor Alschuler, you contributed vitally to this hearing. Obviously, the attorneys all did, but particularly, Mr. Jewell, we appreciate, as several times we've said today, your willingness to come to be here with us today. And certainly any time that you have something else you want to contribute to us, please feel free to do so.
Mr. JEWELL. Thank you, Chairman, and thank you all.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you again, and this panel is dismissed, and we'll move on to the second panel. Thank you very much.
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Mr. JEWELL. Thank you, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Our second panel todayand actually the only other panel we're going to have, because we're combining the second and the third to conserve timeconsists, first of alland I'll introduce them by name and then ask them to come be seated:
Michael Shaheen, Jr., has served as counsel and Director of the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility since 1975. His office investigates allegations of misconduct on the part of Justice Department employees, and in some cases employees of Justice Department agencies, such as the FBI. Prior to his appointment, he had served in a number of senior positions in the Justice Department Civil Rights Division. He is a graduate of Yale University and Vanderbilt University School of Law.
The second member of this panel is Robert M. Bryant. He is the Assistant Director of the FBI for Criminal Investigative Division. Mr. Bryant has been a special agent for 29 years and has served in the Seattle, Dallas, Las Vegas, Kansas City, and Salt Lake City offices, where he was a special agent in chargeor he was the special agent in charge, I should say. In October 1993, he became Assistant Director in charge of the National Security Division and was in that position during the 1996 Olympics. He was named as Assistant Director for the Criminal Investigative Division in March 1997.
David Woody Johnson is special agent in charge of the FBI's Atlanta Division. Mr. Johnson has been a special agent for 28 years, following his service in the Marine Corps in Vietnam. He has served in the Pittsburgh and Washington field offices. He was designated to serve on the House Appropriations Committee investigative staff for 3 years in the 1970's, and served a 2-year special assignment with the Drug Enforcement Administration in the 1980's. In 1986, he became commander of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team. After holding several other posts at FBI headquarters, he was designated as special agent in charge of the Atlanta Division in 1994.
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I want to thank Mr. Shaheen, Mr. Bryant, and Mr. Johnson for coming today and being with us for this panel. I think each of the gentlemen can find the seats with your designated names up there, and I really do appreciate your being here today. Thank you very much for doing it.
I also, in advance, am going to apologize for being gone from the room. I'm going to turn the gavel over to Mr. Barr for a little while. Unfortunately, I have a previous commitment I cannot escape from, and this hearing has gone on longer than perhaps you wished for it to, and, obviously, longer than we might have anticipated.
With that in mind, though, let me say that the written testimony of all of the witnesses on this panel will be submitted into the record, without objection, and I hear none.
And, Mr. Shaheen, please feel free to summarize your testimony, give it to us in any form you want, and you may proceed. And I will at this point, as you proceed, turn the microphone and the gavel over to Mr. Barr for a while.
STATEMENT OF MICHAEL SHAHEEN, JR., DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY, DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
Mr. SHAHEEN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. It's a pleasure to be here this afternoon, and I will give you a brief summary of what is my prepared submission.
Page 115 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC OPR's investigation in the Richard Jewell matter stemmed from allegations that the Government deceived Jewell by, one, videotaping the interview on the pretext that the tape would be used for training purposes; and, two, inducing Mr. Jewell to waive his Miranda rights by presenting the rights as part of the framework of the training video. OPR concluded that the idea of videotaping the interview originated in the FBI Atlanta Division and that it was duly authorized by the special agent in charge. The interviewing agents did not, however, inform the SACthat is, the special agent in chargeabout the use of the training video ploy. Our office concluded that the ploy was not improper per se because the U.S. Supreme had approved strategic deceptions that do not rise to the level of coercison.
OPR found further that neither FBI headquarters nor the Department of Justice itself was informed in advance that the interview would be videotaped. Thus, when Director Louis Freeh instructed Atlanta to provide Miranda warnings to Mr. Jewell, he did not know about the videotaping or the training video ploy. OPR found that the interviewing agents presented the Miranda warnings in such a manner that a reasonable person could have thought that the warnings were only part of the framework of the training video. Mr. Jewell's waiver of his Miranda rights may have been compromised by the possibly misleading manner in which the warnings were presented. The agents' presentation of the Miranda warnings in this context constituted a major error in judgment.
Finally, OPR concluded that there was no evidence of a conspiracy to deprive Mr. Jewell of his constitutional rights, but we agree with Professor Alschuler on that. To the contrary, the decision to give Mr. Jewell Miranda warnings when he may not have been legally entitled to them, because he was not in custody, evidenced an abundance of caution to observe constitutional mandates. Unfortunately, incomplete communication between the FBI headquarters and the Atlanta Division created a situation in which the order to give Mr. Jewell Miranda warnings was given without knowledge of the training video ploy, and in which the interviewing agents, who did not anticipate the order coming from FBI headquarters, converted the order into a constitutionally-suspect advisement of rights.
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That's the summary of my opening statement, Congressman Barr.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Shaheen follows:]
PREPARED STATEMENT OF MICHAEL E. SHAHEEN JR., COUNSEL, OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY (OPR), DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
Mr. Chairman, and Members of the Subcommittee, I am pleased to be here today to discuss with you, as part of your oversight of federal law enforcement efforts, the Department's and the Bureau's investigation of the circumstances surrounding the interview of Richard Jewell in connection with the July 27, 1996 bombing at Centennial Olympic Park.
As you may recall, at 1:20 a.m. on Saturday, July 27, 1996, a pipe bomb contained in a green backpack exploded near the NBC tower at Centennial Olympic Park during the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. The backpack had been discovered by a private security guard named Richard Jewell. The bomb exploded while law enforcement agents were trying to evacuate persons from the vicinity. One person was killed by the blast, another died of a heart attack, and over 100 persons were injured.
Numerous federal, state, and local agencies immediately responded to the incident. It was generally agreed that the bombing was probably a terrorist act and that the FBI should take the lead in the investigation. Many possible suspects were identified in the first days of the investigation. The government had reason to consider Mr. Jewell a possible suspect and planned to conduct a non-confrontational interview to discover what he knew about the bombing.
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On July 30, 1996, agents from the FBI Atlanta Division drove to Mr. Jewell's apartment to request an interview. The apartment complex was swarming with media teams when the agents knocked at Mr. Jewell's door. Mr. Jewell invited them in and told them that he had been waiting for an in-depth interview with the FBI. The agents told Mr. Jewell that they would conduct such an interview, and that the interview would be videotaped. Mr. Jewell seemed surprised at the mention of the videotape. Apparently to placate Mr. Jewell, one of the agents said that the videotape might be used as a training video on how to interview ''first responders'' to crime scenes. This was the beginning of the so-called ''training video ploy.'' The purpose of the ploy was to make Mr. Jewell comfortable with the videotaping, not to induce him to agree to the interview or to come to the FBI offices.
Mr. Jewell agreed to be interviewed and drove himself to the FBI offices.
When he arrived, Mr. Jewell was advised that he was free to leave at any time. The agents again told Mr. Jewell that they wanted to videotape the interview for use as a training video. The interview commenced with agents asking Jewell questions about his background.
Significantly, the interviewing agents did not tell their supervisors about the training video ploy. Thus, when the question arose during a conference call between FBI Headquarters and the FBI Atlanta Division of whether Mr. Jewell should be given Miranda warnings, neither FBI Headquarters nor the Atlanta Division supervisors knew about the training video ploy. (In fact, FBI Headquarters was not even informed that the interview was being videotaped.) After some discussion, FBI Director Louis Freeh stated that Miranda warnings should be given.
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Shortly after Director Freeh's instruction to give the Miranda warnings, one of the interviewing agents was summoned from the interview and was directed to give Mr. Jewell the warnings. The agent re-entered the interview room and indicated to the other agent that Miranda rights had to be given. The agents finished gathering background information and then told Mr. Jewell that the FBI would use the videotape ''for the purposes I told you before.'' The agent continued: ''I want to go through it just like it's [a] real, official interview. . . . I'm even gonna go as far as to advise you of your rights.''
The interview recommenced after a short break. The cameraman turned on additional lights to enhance the videotaping. The interviewing agent then reintroduced himself, displayed his credentials, and asked Mr. Jewell some background questions that had already been asked earlier in the interview. The agent then presented a Miranda waiver form to Mr. Jewell and asked him to read it. A reasonable person could have thought that the warnings were merely part of the training video and not genuine warnings of constitutional protections.
Mr. Jewell stated that he did not know ''if I should call an attorney now or not.'' The agents responded to Mr. Jewell's equivocal statement by saying that they could not make that decision for him. Mr. Jewell then asked if it would be ''alright for me to call my attorney.'' The agent said ''I have no problem with that at all,'' and the agents left the room while Mr. Jewell attempted to contact his attorney.
Mr. Jewell was unable to reach his attorney. He then signed the Miranda waiver form, sat back in his chair, and clipped the microphone to his shirt. The agents then returned, clarified that the interview was voluntary, and continued with the interview.
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During the interview, Mr. Jewell's attorney telephoned the FBI offices to speak to Jewell but the switchboard operator did not recognize Jewell's name and the call was not placed through. The attorney called back half an hour later and was connected to Mr. Jewell. The attorney advised Mr. Jewell to not answer any more questions and the interview was terminated.
Following the interview, allegations were raised that agents had violated Mr. Jewell's constitutional rights during the interview. On September 27, 1996, FBI Director Freeh ordered FBI/OPR to conduct an inquiry to determine the propriety of the manner in which the FBI interviewed Mr. Jewell. On October 31, 1996, the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General instructed OPR to assume the direction of and responsibility for the ongoing FBI/OPR investigation into the Jewell interview.
The focus of OPR's investigation was whether the government deceived Mr. Jewell by (1) videotaping the interview on the pretext that the tape would be used for training purposes; or (2) induced Mr. Jewell to waive his Miranda rights by presenting the rights as part of the framework of the training video.
OPR interviewed over forty persons with knowledge relevant to the Jewell interview; each interview resulted in a signed, sworn statement or in an FBI FD302 Report. OPR also reviewed the videotape of the interview, documents, and other materials relating to the CENTBOM case. Mr. Jewell, through his attorney, declined to be interviewed.
OPR concluded that the idea of videotaping the interview originated in the FBI Atlanta Division, and that the decision to videotape the interview was appropriate because it was duly authorized by the Special Agent in charge (SAC). The interviewing agents did not, however, inform the SAC about the use of the training video ploy. Thus, FBI Headquarters did not know of the ploy either. OPR concluded that the ploy was not improper per se because the U.S. Supreme Court has approved ''strategic deception[s]'' that do not rise to the level of coercion. The case stating that point is United States v. Perkins, 496 U.S. 292 (1990).
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OPR found further that neither FBI Headquarters nor the Department of Justice was informed in advance that the interview would be videotaped. Thus, when FBI Director Louis Freeh instructed the Atlanta Division to provide Miranda warnings to Mr. Jewell, he did not know about either the videotaping or the training video ploy.
OPR concluded that Mr. Jewell's waiver of his Miranda rights may have been compromised by the manner in which the warnings were presented, and that the agents' presentation of the Miranda warnings constituted a major error in judgment. OPR found further that the interviewing agents did not try to dissuade Mr. Jewell from contacting an attorney, but rather acted appropriately when Mr. Jewell stated that he wanted to speak to an attorney.
OPR concluded that there was no evidence of a conspiracy to deprive Mr. Jewell of his constitutional rights. To the contrary, the decision to give Mr. Jewell the Miranda warnings when he may not have been legally entitled to them (because he was not in ''custody'') evidenced an abundance of caution to observe constitutional mandates. Unfortunately, incomplete communication between FBI Headquarters and the Atlanta Division created a situation in which the order to give Mr. Jewell Miranda warnings was given without knowledge of the training video ploy, and in which the interviewing agentswho did not anticipate the order from FBI Headquartersconverted the order into a constitutionally-suspect advisement of rights.
On December 3, 1996, OPR presented its conclusions in a report to the Deputy Attorney General. Following that, FBI/OPR conducted further proceedings relating to the internal discipline of several FBI agents who were involved in the Jewell interview.
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Mr. Chairman, I would also like to take this opportunity to clarify one point about OPR's conclusions. OPR concluded that the interviewing agents committed a major error in judgment in presenting the Miranda warnings in the context of the training video ploy and that the agent's conduct was improper. OPR did not, however, make a final determination that the presentation of the warnings violated Miranda. OPR was directed by the Attorney General to conduct a factual analysis of the events which transpired following the bombing and which precipitated the July 30, 1996 interview. The report presented the various factors that a court would weigh in ruling on the admissibility of any statements Mr. Jewell might have made following his advisement of Miranda rights. The report did not offer a conclusion on this point, but it noted that ''it is possible that a court would have suppressed any statements Jewell made on the ground his . . . Miranda rights'' had been violated. (page 43 of the redacted, now-public, report) OPR did not render an advisory opinion on legal issues that might have arisenbut did not arisein any subsequent criminal case. Instead, OPR made perfectly clear that the interviewing agent's conduct was improper, sending a clear signal to the FBI that the juxtaposition of Miranda rights and a ruse or ploy is an act that may raise constitutional issues affecting both the underlying cases and the agents' careers. The report thus provided appropriate guidance to the FBI about the many factual and legal issues that agents must be aware of when interviewing persons in a criminal case.
I will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.
Mr. BARR [presiding]. Thank you, Mr. Shaheen.
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STATEMENT OF ROBERT BRYANT, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Good afternoon, Congressman Barr. Our statement has been submitted for the record, and I just want to make a few short comments.
The summer of 1996 was a busy time for the FBI headquarters. At that time we had a bombing investigation resulting from the bombing at Khobar Towers at Dahran, Saudi Arabia; TWA 800 had recently gone down; the Olympic games were ongoing.
Mr. BARR. Mr. Bryant, would you make sure the mike is on and close enough so that everybody can hear, please?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Yes, okay.
Preparation by the FBI for the Olympic games had begun 4 1/2 years before, and this preparation included a lot of issues as far as coordination, planning, and trying to get ready for one of the largest peacetime events that's ever occurred in the United States.
On the night of July 27, 1996, the bombing occurred, and I was called at my residence. I called the Director and then proceeded to FBI headquarters to the command post. From that moment at 1:20 on July 27, 1996 to this very time, the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation have mounted a huge, coordinated effort to solve this crime, and you should be aware that on January 16, 1997 and February 21, 1997 there were two other bombings in the Atlanta area which are possibly linked to the Centennial bombing.
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A bombing task force was created shortly after the Centennial Park bombing, and this is led by an FBI inspector. He's assisted by senior leaders in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. The task force is comprised of 40 FBI agents, 36 Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms agents, 10 GBI, and approximately 36 to 38 professional support personnel. This task force, since its inception, has covered 14,823 leads and has conducted 13,756 interviews, and numerous suspects have been interviewed. There's currently a $500,000 reward and a toll-free number trying to solve this case, and this case will be solved sooner or later.
With regard to Richard Jewell, I deeply regret that his name was leaked to the media. This not only damaged Mr. Jewell and his reputation, but it caused the FBI substantial damage to its investigation.
On July 30, 1996, he was one of several suspects the FBI was looking at. The concern that the FBI conspired with the media is without merit. Mr. Jewell has suffered because of this leak, and so has the FBI.
Mr. BARR. Thank you.
STATEMENT OF DAVID WOODY JOHNSON, SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE, ATLANTA REGIONAL OFFICE, FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION, AND MICHAEL DE FEO, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
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Mr. JOHNSON. Thank you, Congressman Barr. I'd like to make a few comments regarding the status of the Atlanta FBI office prior to and during the Olympic games to give you some perspective of what was going on at the time.
As Mr. Bryant has stated, we began planning four-and-a-half years prior to the games with State, local, and Federal agencies in order to make certain that the games were carried out safely and that security was as strong as it could be. It evolved into the largest peacetime event in history. We were the lead Federal law enforcement agency in Atlanta. The size of the Atlanta office of the FBI increased by 400 percent prior to and during the Olympic games. We were, during the games, the largest field division of the FBI. During the games, the Atlanta FBI office operated a command center 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and it began 2 weeks before the games and continued for several days after.
We were the lead agency in a multi-agency bomb management center located at Dobbins Air Force Base. It operated 24 hours a day from July 1 until August 15, 1996. The bomb management center was operated with ATF, GBIGeorgia Bureau of Investigationthe military, the Atlanta police department, and others. We had diagnostic EOD teams, mobile and staged EOD render-safe teams, and post-blast teams. What that means is that at virtually all venue sites and at Centennial Park we had bomb technicians available to respond immediately to any suspicious packages or potential devices. If they were located and appeared they might be a device, we could send a render-it-safe team of people who might be able to disarm the device or at least could handle it. We also had people available, should an explosion occur.
To give you some perspective, during the Olympic games of 1984 in Los Angeles, there were fewer than 30 bomb threats which led an explosive ordnance team to go out and determine whether it was really a device or not. During our games of 1996, we had 200 situations that required a team to go out. After the bomb went off on July 27, we had 88 deployments of those teams.
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We were also the lead agency for emergency tactical responses. That means that if SWAT or the Hostage Rescue Team needed to be deployed because of a hostage situation or any other high-risk situation, they were there under our command. This included nuclear, biological, or chemical threats.
The FBI also managed the Olympic Intelligence Center, which was a multi-agency system designed to collect, analyze, and disseminate intelligence, whether it concerned terrorism, public order, or the like. This center was located in our space. It contained representatives of every national intelligence operation, State and local agencies. We operated 24 hours a day. We integrated threat information. We produced a daily threat report, and we also put out special intelligence bulletins.
And, also, we had the responsibility to continue the management of the Atlanta office and its investigative programs. All of those were my responsibility to manage.
And I appreciate the opportunity, sir, to be here to represent the field perspective.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Johnson follows:]
PREPARED STATEMENT OF DAVID WOODY JOHNSON, SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE, ATLANTA REGIONAL OFFICE, FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
Good morning, Chairman McCollum and Members of the Subcommittee.
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To refresh everyone's memory, the Centennial Olympic Park bombing occurred on July 27, 1996. The bombing at Atlanta Northside Family Planning Services occurred on January 16, 1997 and the bombing of the Otherside Lounge occurred on February 21, 1997. Tragically, two lives were lost and hundreds of innocent victims were injured in these attacks.
Each of these bombings resulted in a massive interagency law enforcement response. Various federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies have been conducting a wide ranging criminal investigation into these cases, coordinated by the FBI.
Recently, it has been determined through laboratory examinations that there are strong links between the three bombings. Because of these links, our investigative effort has been consolidated into one joint task forcethe Atlanta Bomb Task Force.
This task force is led by an FBI inspector who is assisted by senior managers of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF), the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), and the FBI. Currently, the Atlanta Bomb Task Force is comprised of 40 FBI agents, 36 ATF agents, 10 GBI agents, two Department of Defense agents, two part-time Internal Revenue Service agents, and 35 support personnel, for a total of 123 full-time personnel. The task force is currently using FBI space. However, next month it will relocate to new space, with both the FBI and ATF sharing the expense and providing office equipment.
Task force investigators have been aggressively pursuing each of the 14,823 leads that have been generated so far by these bombing incidents. In addition, investigators have conducted 13,756 interviews in an effort to identify the perpetrator(s) of the bombings.
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Members of the Subcommittee probably saw on television or read in the newspapers about the news conference the FBI and the ATF held in Atlanta on June 9, 1997. During this press conference the $500,000 reward, initially offered in December for information leading to the arrest of the individual(s) responsible for the Centennial Park bombing, was extended to cover all three bombings. Several new and promising leads were generated as a result of this conference and other appeals the FBI has made for public support. There is a toll-free telephone number for the public to report any information they may have, and both the FBI and ATF Internet home pages contain information and photos regarding the Atlanta bombing case.
As you know, a group called ''the Army of God'' claimed responsibility for the last two bombings. There is evidence suggesting that the author of the letters, which were received after the third incident, was involved in the bombings in some manner. The language in the letters indicates the author is a violent opponent of abortion, homosexuality, and the federal government.
Members of the Subcommittee can be assured that the ATF, the GBI, the FBI and all the other agencies involved are doing all they can to solve these heinous crimes. We owe the American people nothing less. The FBI is confident that these cases will be solved, and will continue to solicit the assistance of the American public, as well as foreign visitors to Atlanta who may possess a piece of information critical to our investigative effort.
The Richard Jewell Interview
You'll recall that on July 30, 1996three days after the Centennial Park bombingMr. Jewell was interviewed by FBI agents in Atlanta. Earlier that day, his name was linked to the bombing in a newspaper article. As you know, the Justice Department eventually cleared Mr. Jewell as a target of the investigation. Indeed, on October 26, 1996, the Department sent Mr. Jewell a letter informing him of this decision.
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For a number of good reasons, Mr. Jewell was one of many persons who came to the FBI's attention early in the Centennial Park investigation. As Director Freeh has stated in the past, we would not have been doing our job if we did not thoroughly evaluate all of the information which was brought to our attention about Mr. Jewell.
Soon after the Centennial Park bombing, the FBI assumed the lead in the investigation. The special agent in charge of the Atlanta office had FBI command responsibility for overall Olympic Games security. Another special agent in charge was designated to head the bombing investigation, and those two field executives worked closely together and shared responsibility for the bombing investigation until the Games were concluded.
Information was received from a former employer of Jewell, who had been a Centennial Park security guard, and from other sources which, when taken together with Mr. Jewell's activities at the time of the bombing and thereafter, made him a principal suspect. Preparations were being made for his interview when on Tuesday, July 30, 1996, it was learned that the Atlanta news media were saying that Mr. Jewell's status was a suspect. It was decided to interview Mr. Jewell as soon as possible, either at his apartment or at the FBI offices.
Due to conditions resulting from the massive media presence at Mr. Jewell's apartment, it was decided to conduct the interview at the FBI offices in Atlanta. Regular telephone conference calls were being held between Atlanta and Washington management concerning major developments in the investigation. When Director Freeh learned that the interview was being conducted in a law enforcement structure, he directed that in an excess of caution, Mr. Jewell be furnished Miranda warningsthat is, the advice of constitutional rights which would be given a person under arrest.
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Director Freeh's instruction was conveyed to the principal interviewer, a veteran agent with 22 years of experience. The interview was already underway, and was being videotaped. The interviewing agent had advised Mr. Jewell that its purpose was two-fold, to secure his recollection of the events and to make a training video for first responders to bombing scenes.
In an apparent attempt to preserve the non-confrontational atmosphere of the interview and avoid a loss of Mr. Jewell's confidence, the interviewing agent chose to minimize the impact of the Miranda warnings by characterizing them as ''. . . customary in pretty much all cases of this magnitude.'' The agent explained the warnings as though they were part of the training video previously discussed, and provided Mr. Jewell with the standard written ''Interrogation; Advice of Rights'' form.
Mr. Jewell was not misled, perhaps because of the clarity of the written explanation in the advice of rights form he was physically provided. He immediately responded that he did not know if he should call an attorney because he was unsure if he was being investigated for the bombing or if the interview was for what he had been told, that is, to make a training video.
Mr. Jewell was allowed to call an attorney and terminated the interview based on his legal advice. Because the interview was unproductive, the videotape was not carefully reviewed after the event at supervisory levels within the Atlanta office. In late September, 1996, Director Freeh learned that Mr. Jewell's attorney was alleging that the interview was improperly conducted.
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An investigation was conducted by the Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) of the Department of Justice, with the assistance of FBI's own OPR. That report, prepared under the direction of Michael Shaheen, the Department of Justice Counsel for Professional Responsibility, found that neither conducting the videotaped interview nor persuading Mr. Jewell to agree to it by describing it as a training video violated any applicable rule or legal standard.
However, once the instruction was given to provide Miranda warnings to Mr. Jewell, it was a major error in judgment to incorporate those warnings into the training video scenario. It is a matter of legal speculation whether a court would have ruled that Miranda warnings were required in Mr. Jewell's case. However, if they were found to have been required, the training video ploy would almost certainly have rendered a waiver involuntary and resulted in suppression of any incriminating statements.
The Department of Justice's Office of Professional Responsibility report concluded that the interviewing agent's major error in judgment did not result in a violation of legal guarantees. Mr. Jewell was not deceived and promptly called for his lawyer. That report also found that there was no evidence of a conspiracy to deprive Mr. Jewell of his constitutional rights, and no intentional wrongdoing or outrageous governmental misconduct.
Even though the Department of Justice's report found no legal or constitutional violations in connection with Mr. Jewell's interview, we in FBI management certainly did not feel that the manner in which the interview had been conducted complied with our standards. Director Freeh ordered that an internal inquiry be conducted as soon as he learned of the events. The investigative part of that inquiry was merged into the Department of Justice inquiry, but when the FBI received the report it evaluated the conduct described therein against its own disciplinary standards.
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That process took some time because it coincided with a complete revision and expansion of the procedural protections available in the FBI disciplinary process, and involved certain time periods for notices, opportunities to respond, appeals, etc. All of those processes have recently been concluded, and the results can be summarized as follows. Two special agents, two supervisory level agents, and two executives were proposed for disciplinary action, ranging up to a 15-day suspension without pay.
After consideration of oral and written responses and of written appeals, one agent and one supervisor were each suspended for 5 days without pay, and letters of censure were given to two executives. The names of those employees are not being mentioned because of privacy considerations. It should be noted in regard to the initial proposals, which ranged up to a 15-day suspension, that there is a rigidity in senior executive service regulations government-wide, which does not permit any penalty between a letter of censure and a 15-day suspension, meaning that an executive who deserves a 5-day suspension must receive either a letter of censure or 15 days without pay, as there is no intermediate penalty.
With regard to Director Freeh's role in connection with Mr. Jewell's interview, he has been criticized for micromanagement. In this case he was advised that Mr. Jewell was to be interviewed. He heard the views of all concerned, including the principal associate deputy attorney general. Based upon his experience as a federal judge and as a prosecutor, he made the judgment that Miranda warnings should be provided. That was a decision within his policy prerogative as director of the FBI, because he has the ultimate duty to ensure that individually and as an institution the FBI recognizes that constitutional values are more important than the outcome of any single interview. He has stated that he would make the same decision again today.
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With regard to the unauthorized publicity about Mr. Jewell's status as a suspect, the FBI has no information suggesting, and no reason to believe, that the information came from any representative of the FBI, which next to Mr. Jewell suffered most from this disclosure. Promptly after the disclosure an inquiry was conducted by the FBI's own Office of Professional Responsibility. That inquiry determined that approximately 200 federal, state and local law enforcement personnel in 9 separate agencies in the Atlanta area had knowledge that Richard Jewell was a suspect prior to the July 30 newspaper article to that effect. One hundred and twenty-two FBI employees at FBI headquarters had that knowledge, as well as 10 persons from several other federal agencies. One hundred and ninety-nine FBI employees staffing a 1800 hotline at the Washington Field Office also were within the universe of knowledgeable persons.
After running out the most logical leads, that inquiry was closed on May 22, because of the impracticality of further investigation, given the size of the universe and the large number of persons not subject to the FBI's power to compel cooperation in an internal investigation. The FBI will naturally be alert to the possibility of further leads developing from litigation over the article, which might permit the inquiry to be reopened.
Returning now to the bombings themselves, from the beginning of these cases to the present, the FBI has evaluated all of the evidence and other facts and followed all of the leads. The FBI has never wavered from this method of operation even when, in the first days and weeks after the bombing, there was a strong investigative interest in Mr. Jewell. Throughout this investigation, all of the federal, state, and local investigators assigned to these bombings have workedand are still workingtirelessly to bring the person or persons responsible for these crimes to justice.
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Mr. BARR. Thank you, and we appreciate all three of you being here today and appreciate, as well, the brevity of your summaries. And we'll now turn to the second phase of our hearing today, and that is questions and answers.
The Chair recognizes the gentleman from North Carolina, Mr. Coble, for 5 minutes.
Mr. COBLE. I thank the chairman, and thank you, gentlemen, for being with us. I regret, Mr. Chairman, I had to go to another hearing during most of the testimony of the first panel; I regret that I missed that.
Mr. Shaheen, let me ask you a question. Are ruses or ploys commonly done or is that activity approved by the Bureau, prohibited by the Bureau, middle ground by the Bureau? What's the reading on that?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Congressman, I don't have a statistical breakdown. Ruses or ploys are notare used often; that is, another way to put it, not infrequently. They are sanctioned by Supreme Court decisions. They're referred to in the operative cases, strategic deceptions; they are approved by the leadership of the field office when they are employed normally, and in this case the management of the field was not aware that the ruse was in play.
Mr. COBLE. And I presume, furthermorewell, strike that. I shouldn't say that. I'll let you answer that.
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Did anyone at FBI headquarters in Washington know that a ruse or ploy was on track or being used?
Mr. SHAHEEN. No, sir, that's a critical question, and the answer to that is, no, sir, they were not, until several weeks later.
Mr. COBLE. I thank you, sir.
Mr. Bryant and/or Mr. Johnson, was the leak investigation diligently pursued, in your opinion? By that, I mean in a timely fashion; let's get moving; let's find out the source of it? Do you all have an opinion as to that? Either of you? From both of you?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Congressman, the leak investigationhow these are done is, as I understand it, it was handled by our Office of Professional Responsibility. What you do is you determine the universe of people that had the information that, in fact, was leaked, and I think one figure I saw earlier was that there were 521 individuals in the Atlanta command post that had knowledge, and I think there were nine different agencies. There were also people at FBI headquarters that had knowledge of it, and there was a huge universe of people that had knowledge of the suspect status. And that
Mr. COBLE. And who, therefore, would have been in a position to have initiated the leak?
Page 135 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Yes, or somebody that they might have talked to.
Mr. COBLE. Yes. Mr. Johnson, do you want to add to that?
Mr. JOHNSON. Well, the only thing I can say from experience is our Office of Professional Responsibility is very aggressive, and I think the Department is also, and I think as soon as the case was opened, they jumped on it as aggressively as they could.
Mr. COBLE. Gentlemen, let me ask you this: we hear much talk up here on Capitol Hill about turf fights between different Federal agencies. One agency claims jurisdiction here; another claims jurisdiction there. With that in mind, Mr. Johnson and/or Mr. Bryant, is it your belief that there was a cooperative spirit between the FBI, on the one hand, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, on the other, concerning the bombing investigation?
Or let me extend that question. That's (a); (b) did the ATF offer the use of its lab; (c) was that offer rejected or accepted?
Mr. JOHNSON. Let me attempt to address that. In the 28 years, almost
Mr. COBLE. And, Mr. Johnson, pardon me. I don't mean to imply that there's turf arguments here, but I just know that that's oftentimes discussed up here. Go ahead, sir.
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Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, sir, I understand.
In my almost 28 years in law enforcement, the Atlanta environment is the best that I've ever been in with respect to agencies working together. It's the best that I've had with ATF. We had worked together through the process of the development of a plan for the games. They did offer the use of their labs. The decision was made at the time the bomb went off that it was an act of terrorism; that we had primary jurisdiction in that investigation. I sent all the material to our lab. In spite of the criticism that we've had recently of our lab, I still think it's the best in the world, and our lab can do some things that the Atlanta ATF lab is not able to do, such as DNA analysis. They did offer, and with the Centennial Park bombing, we sent all the material to Washington.
Now if I might add to that, when the bomb went off at Sandy Springs at the abortion clinic and then later, when the bomb went off at The Lounge, January and February of this year, we were on scene together. We immediately decided that ATF would take the lead in the development of evidence and search of the crime scene; that they would take charge of all physical evidence, and that we would be the lead in the investigative side. So all the material from those two bombings went initially to the ATF lab in Atlanta.
Mr. COBLE. Thank you, gentlemen.
Mr. Chairman, I hope you will note that I did not ask a question after my 5 minutes had expired, and I yield back.
Page 137 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. BARR. The Chair did note that. Thank you, Mr. Coble.
The Chair is also pleased to recognize the presence of the distinguished gentleman from California, Mr. Bono, who is a member of the full Judiciary Committee. He does not serve on this subcommittee, but, without objection, the gentleman from California is recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. BONO. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you for allowing me to ask a couple of questions. I am curious about a couple of things. I deeply appreciate it.
First of all, if a ruse is legal and is done often, why didn't you just continue along that pattern? Why was it deemed necessary to read the Miranda rights? If everything was done properly, I don't understand the panic and the call from Louis Freeh to say: Read him his Miranda rights. It appears, from what you're saying, that everything you were doing was perfectly legal prior to Louis Freeh's call.
Mr. SHAHEEN. Congressman, may I try?
Mr. BONO. Yes, whoever can answer.
Mr. SHAHEEN. By the way, on a personal note, I have two sons that have discovered their parents' Sonny and Cher albums, and if they had known you were going to be here, they would have accompanied me.
Mr. BONO. Well, you can send them and I'll sign them. [Laughter.]
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I can only give you half of the signature, though. [Laughter.]
Mr. SHAHEEN. Congressman, to paraphrase a bumper sticker that is seen on a lot of pickups, when there's a failure of communication, stuff happens. That's what happened here. We had the Atlanta interviewing agents running on a track that their leadership in Atlanta knew, and that was the interview was going on, and that they had told and had approvedhad the approval of their bosses, the SACs. The claim that the videotape was being used, or would be used, for training purposeswhen Mr. Jewell indicated surprise that it was going to be videotaped, they indicated that the videotape would be used for training purposes. Headquarters, which issued the order to give the Miranda warnings, was unaware that it was being videotaped or that there was a ploy in effect.
Mr. BONO. So you're saying he was not fully informed and
Mr. SHAHEEN. I'm just informed that I said that the Atlanta leadership knew of the ploy. If I said that, that was wrong. They knew it was being videotaped; they did not know that there was a ruse, the ruse, that is, that had been given to Mr. Jewell that it was going to be used for training purposes for first responders.
Mr. BONO. The Atlanta leadership?
Mr. SHAHEEN. The SACs in Atlanta; that's right. And the Director of the FBI, who issued the instruction to give the Miranda warnings, was unaware of the ruse as well.
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Mr. BONO. He was not aware that you were perfectly legal in what you were doing and it wasn't necessary?
Mr. SHAHEEN. It was not necessary
Mr. BONO. Under the ruse kind of law, or whatever you
Mr. SHAHEEN. In that context, it was not necessary, but he, the Director, had had two exchanges with the Department leadership in which he had been persuaded that Miranda would be
Mr. BONO. He wasn't totally informed. Is that what you're saying?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir, that's right.
Mr. BONO. Okay. Thatit gives an appearance of, you know, let's do it this way, and then Louis Freeh getting you guys on the phone and going, ''Oh, let's call an audible here fast. I don't know that this should be that way.'' And I think perception and PR are very important.
The second questionit was a strange procedure, the way it wasan audible was called on it, and it would appear that the communications would be bettersecondly, when the lawyer returned Louis Freeh's call, how is it possible that an agency could not connect the lawyer to his client. Wouldn't that be a denial of civil rights?
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Mr. SHAHEEN. Congressman, you saidyour question was, when the lawyer called Louis Freeh
Mr. BONO. When he called Jewellwhen the lawyer returned Jewell's callI'm not a lawyer, but I would assume that his civil rights would be denied if the lawyer was not allowed to talk to his client under those circumstances; is that correct?
Mr. JOHNSON. Let me attempt to address that, Congressman. As I stated in opening remarks, we had a huge operation going on in Atlanta at that time. We hadone ofthe biggest event in peacetime history. We had literally hundreds of agents and support people working in our Atlanta headquarters office in support of security for the games.
Mr. Jewell was not a household word on July 30, 1996. The people answering the telephone have the roster of literally hundreds of people that are working in that command center. I believe that the person answering the phone did not understand initially what Mr.who Mr. Jewell was or who the attorney was looking for.
Mr. BONO. But wasn't he transferred to the watch commander who would have that knowledge?
Mr. JOHNSON. Eventually he was. My understanding, he called back later, was transferred to that watch commander, and then we were able to connect him with Mr. Jewell.
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Mr. BONO. If I could have another minute
Mr. BARR. Without objection, the gentleman is recognized for an additional minute.
Mr. BONO. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
His testimony is that he was transferred to the watch commander, and the watch commander was the one who denied him access. That's kind of a contradiction to what you're saying. And if you cannot go into a real lengthy explanation about the circumstances and how many hundreds of people were there, if we could getI would assume you had professionals on under any circumstances, and you had a watch commander who should have known that information, and when you make an arrest of that nature, I find it difficult to believe that you wouldn't be aware that he was in fact being filmed, or whatever you want to call it, but the lawyers were denied access to their client, and I have not gotten an explanation at this point. If you can give me one, I would appreciate it.
Mr. JOHNSON. Well, Congressman, he was not under arrest. He volunteeredvoluntarily came to the office.
Mr. BONO. I understand that, but
Mr. JOHNSON. He hadhe had
Page 142 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. BONO [continuing]. Isn't his lawyer still privileged to have access to his client, under whatever the circumstances?
Mr. JOHNSON. Oh, absolutely. If he had reached out for clientI mean, if Mr. Jewell reached out for his attorney, then we will try to connect that individual. I think that, my understanding, there were two phone calls placed. That may not bethat may not be accurate, but, my understanding, there were two calls made. The first time he did not get through; the second time he got the command post
Mr. BONO. As I understand it, they were turned down by the watch commander.
Mr. JOHNSON. I don't know, sir.
Mr. BONO. I guesscan I ask them?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Congressman, our investigation indicated that it was just a plain mixup and that there were two calls. It's important to note at the outset that we sought repeatedly
Mr. BONO. I'm sure there were two calls. My question is: Did they get through on the first call to their watchto the watch commander, and didwere they, in fact, denied access by the watch commander?
Mr. SHAHEEN. We have no evidence, Congressman, that he got through to the watch commander on the first call.
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Mr. BONO. Pardon me?
Mr. SHAHEEN. No evidence that he got through to the watch commander on the first call.
Mr. BONO. Okay. You can get back to me later.
Mr. SHAHEEN. All right.
Mr. BONO. But if you would supply me with that data, I would like to know that's a certainty.
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir.
Mr. BONO. Thank you.
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir.
[No information submitted at time of printing.]
Mr. BARR. Thank you.
The gentleman from New York, Mr. Schumer, is recognized for 5 minutes.
Page 144 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. SCHUMER. Thank you, and I very much appreciate the opportunity to testifyI mean, to ask questions and your opportunity to be here. And I don't know, Mr. Bryant, Mr. Johnson, Mr. Shaheen, if you heard my remarks at the beginning, but it's something I feel very strongly about, and, in fact, have brought up to the Director.
So I guess my questions are going to focus on what kind of followup the Bureau has done in regard to this horrible leaking, both in this case and generally. And so I guess my first question is to Mr. Johnson. What kind of investigation was done in the Atlanta office to see whether anyone in Atlanta leaked information about Mr. Jewell that shouldn't have occurred?
Mr. JOHNSON. Congressman, the investigation of a leak is going to be conducted by our Office of Professional Responsibility. As soon as there was an indication of a leak, Director Freeh opened an investigation, and what we provided to him were, the best that we could, the names of all the individuals, or at least the number of people that were in Atlanta who knew that Mr. Jewell was potentially a suspect. Thatwe don't do that in the Atlanta
Mr. SCHUMER. Okay. So there was no investigation done by the Atlanta people?
Mr. JOHNSON. Other than to give them
Mr. SCHUMER. Okay. I understand.
Page 145 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JOHNSON [continuing]. A universe of people.
Mr. SCHUMER. Okay. Mr. Shaheen, you are the gentleman who Mr. Johnson says has responsibility for this.
Mr. SHAHEEN. No, sir, Congressman, it was the FBI OPR. I'm with the Department's Office of Professional Responsibility.
Mr. SCHUMER. I see.
Mr. SHAHEEN. There are twothey're two separate offices.
Mr. SCHUMER. Okay, then I guess I have to ask Mr. Bryant the question. What has the Office of Professional Responsibility done, although I noticed, Mr. Shaheen, in your report you didn't touch on the leak at all, did you?
Mr. SHAHEEN. We were not asked to involve ourselves in that in this investigation, Congressman, but we oversaw the Bureau's work in the leak inquiry. Theythe Director indicated before the Senate subcommittee that they had identified 531
Mr. SCHUMER. Yes, I
Mr. SHAHEEN [continuing]. People who had possession of the information. I think it's fair to say that the Attorney General wants to have the final say on that, and we're in an assessment mode.
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Mr. SCHUMER. Okay. I would askMr. Chairman, I've been informed that the FBI's head of the Office of Professional Responsibility, Mr. DeFeo, I believe it is, is here. Could we ask that he come forward?
Mr. BARR. I think that would be appropriate if Mr. DeFeo would come forward, please, and take a seat at the table.
Mr. SCHUMER. Thank you, Mr. DeFeo. I guess Mr. Johnson bucked the questionnot ''buck''; I don't mean to be pejorative here, but said that it was your office that had responsibility for the leak. I would like to know what kind of investigation you did, if any, and then I'll ask some specific questions. But you could give me a general review of what you did, how many people it involved, how long it took, and what you found, if anything.
Mr. DEFEO. Yes, sir. I should specify there were several aspects to the leak inquiry which was done. One related
Mr. SCHUMER. I'm sorry, I didn't hear the last phrase of the first sentence.
Mr. DEFEO. I'm sorry. There were several aspects to the leakexcuse me. There were several aspects to the leak inquiry which was done. The first related to the leak of Mr. Jewell's identity as a suspect. The second related to leaking of information from the search warrant affidavit.
Page 147 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. SCHUMER. Correct.
Mr. DEFEO. The information which is contained in the Director's statement, which was filed in slightly different form today, concerning a universe of 531 people who had knowledge of that information prior to its publication relates to the publication of Mr. Jewell's identity as a suspect.
Mr. SCHUMER. Correct.
Mr. DEFEO. There was a separate inquiry which would include a separate universe of people who had knowledge about the search warrant information.
With respect to both inquiries, they were both opened relatively contemporaneously with the leak itself. The first step was to attempt to secure from all of the relevant offices and divisions the numbers of persons who were knowledegable of the information at the time it appeared. That number was 531 people in theknew in thein the leak of Mr. Jewell's identity universe, and a smaller number with respect to the search warrant.
Mr. SCHUMER. How many washow many with respect to the search warrant?
Mr. DEFEO. I do not recall at the moment. It was a substantially smaller number, however.
Mr. SCHUMER. Below a hundred?
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Mr. DEFEO. To my recollection, yes.
Mr. SCHUMER. Okay. I would ask unanimous consent that Mr. DeFeo be allowed to just submit that number, so we know it, for the record.
Mr. BARR. Without objection.
[See Appendix D, page 117.]
Mr. SCHUMER. Please continue, Mr. DeFeo.
Mr. DEFEO. An assessment was then made of the available evidence or leads relating to these two areas. With the committee's permission, I would be somewhat general in this area due to the fact that we anticipate that potential litigation which may arise from Mr. Jewell's efforts to seek compensation may result in additional information which may help pursue those inquiries to more successful conclusion.
But, in any event, what we did
Mr. BARR. Excuse me, but you will be as specific
Mr. DEFEO. Of course.
Mr. BARR [continuing]. As possible today, based on your knowledge?
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Mr. DEFEO. Of course.
Mr. BARR. Okay.
Mr. DEFEO. We evaluated the available information, the leads which we had. Those which appeared most concrete and promising were pursued not just in Atlanta, but also in other divisionsinterviews, toll records, things thattelephone records, things of this nature. Those efforts were essentially unsuccessful with respect to both aspects of the inquiry.
In approximately April or May of this year, we came to the conclusion that, absent a massive interviewing campaign which we estimated would require from 1,000 to 2,000 interviews, many of such interviews involving people who are not employees of the FBI, and therefore whom we have no authority to compel to respond to our questions, that we essentially had nowhere to go. Absent a very few leads which we decided not to explore because we felt doing so would destroy their utility, whereas if we waited for the litigation, for example, between Mr. Jewell and various news media, et cetera, in which the identity of the supposed leakers would be very pertinent, we decided that it was not essentially cost-effective; that it would be an exercise in futility to pursue those interviews, and we would be better advised to wait for developments in the litigation.
Mr. SCHUMER. Before you get to the second one, let me ask a few questions. So is it fair to say
Page 150 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. BARR. If the gentleman would suspend for just a moment
Mr. SCHUMER. I would be happy to suspend.
Mr. BARR. Does the gentleman thinkI haven't asked questions yet, either. Would an additional minute be sufficient to at least conclude the gentleman's round of questioning right now; then we can come back for more?
Mr. SCHUMER. Well, you know, if we canis therehow many votes are there?
Mr. BARR. Probably two.
Mr. SCHUMER. Well, maybe what I'd suggest is the chairman could ask his questions, and then I'd come back and ask some more about this.
Mr. BARR. Okay.
Mr. SCHUMER. Well, let me just try to conclude here. Is it fair to say, Mr. Johnson, that at the veryat the best, what the FBI did is went and interviewed all the suspects, asked them if they leaked, and then if they said no, dropped them as a potential leaker?
Mr. DEFEO. No, we did not do that, based upon the assumption that a person who would leak would lie.
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Mr. SCHUMER. So what did youhow many interviews were conducted?
Mr. DEFEO. I would say in this circumstance that there were unquestionably less than 50.
Mr. SCHUMER. Less than 50?
Mr. DEFEO. And the reason being that, absent information, we did not do a blind interviewing campaign. We conducted interviews
Mr. SCHUMER. I mean, I'm willing to be persuaded otherwise, sir, but it seems to me that the effort was perfunctory, even though it was probably more than done in any other leak. And I have to tell youI mean, leaking is a crime, too, especially if it's grand jury information or other kinds of prohibited information. I don't think, either in this case or in most cases where there are leaks, that the FBI does the job, and I think something is needed to change that.
I daresay, on a major case, if the subject weren't leaking, you would have done more than 50 interviews and said, well, let's wait and see what litigation brings out. That's not a way one does a potentially criminal investigation, which is defer to a private civil suit. You have subpoena power. You have the ability to compel people to testify.
Was anyone in that 50 put underasked to take a lie detector test? Was any single of the 50 or so witnesses asked to do that?
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Mr. DEFEO. To my recollection, persons were asked if they were willing to take a test. MyI have no recollection of a test being ordered for a person.
Mr. SCHUMER. Could the Bureau compel some such person under circumstances, if they were believed to be a potential leaker?
Mr. DEFEO. Yes, it could for onboard employees
Mr. SCHUMER. Yes.
Mr. DEFEO [continuing]. Who were the subject of an administrative rather than a criminal investigation.
Mr. SCHUMER. Yes. Well, I think I don't even have to ask another question. Obviously, this was not a very serious or high priority of the Bureau, even though the damage that was done to Mr. Jewell was real, and it doesn't surprise me because leaks are never pursued. And I think it's reached a point in the Bureau where it's starting to hurt the Bureau, which I care very much about, in other instances, like the labs instance and other cases as well. I can tell you that I am going to ask the Director to start a whole different attitude in the Bureau about leaks.
I could pursue further questions, Mr. Chairman, but it's obvious that theat least to methat what was undertaken was perfunctory and no more than that. If not a singlewith 531 potential leakers and not one single lie detector test, and maybe less than 50 interviews, and an idea ''We'll wait for civil litigation,'' that's not the usual diligence the FBI pursues or uses when a potentially criminal act in their jurisdiction occurs.
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Mr. BARR. I thank the gentleman from New York, and we will haveif the gentleman has additional questions, we will come back. Does the gentleman from New York have additional questions for a second round?
Mr. SCHUMER. Mr. Chairman, not to hold the witnesses. It will be a half-hour before we finish voting, and I know you want toyou need your 5 minutes. So I will ask unanimous consent that I might submit questions in writing and get any of the four witnesses to respond in writing. Would that be all right?
Mr. BARR. Without objection.
Mr. SCHUMER. And will the witnesses be willing to do that, so we don't have to stay?
[Witnesses all nod affirmatively.]
Mr. SCHUMER. Thanks very much.
Mr. BARR. Thank you.
Let me just ask one quick, follow-up question to the, I think, very important line of questioning by the gentleman from New York, and that is: Were any of the persons who were interviewed, that approximately 10 percent of them that had access to the information, placed under oath?
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Mr. DEFEO. I'm almost positive that some were, but I would prefer to answer that in a written response, so I can be precisely accurate.
[See Appendix D, page 117.]
Mr. BARR. Do any of the other witnesses have any information on that, whether any of the individuals interviewed were placed under oath?
Mr. SHAHEEN. No.
Mr. JOHNSON. No.
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. No.
Mr. BARR. Okay. But you wouldn't have any idea, Mr. DeFeo, approximately how many of those 50-odd witnesses were placed under oath?
Mr. DEFEO. No, Congressman, and I don't wish to speculate, because I did not prepare myself on this subject before appearing here today, and I don't wish to give erroneous information.
Mr. BARR. Okay. I would appreciate it if you would provide the specific answer to that question as well.
Page 155 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC [See Appendix D, page 117.]
Mr. BARR. I share the concerns of the gentleman from New York, not only with regard to the damage that
Mr. SCHUMER. Would the gentleman yield?
Mr. BARR. Certainly.
Mr. SCHUMER. It's a rare moment; I just want everybody to know. [Laughter.]
Mr. BARR. Thank you.
I think that there has been damage not only done to the individual in this case, but also, as Mr. Schumer indicated, to the credibility not just of the FBI, but of our law enforcement and judicial system. When something like this happens, it can erode public credibility, which I think is very damaging to you all because it can influence your future ability to conduct investigations. If the public perceives that information given to the FBI or which is secret information in court proceedings is going to be released publicly, then people are going to be much more hesitant to come forward and provide information.
So I'm really somewhat flabbergasted at what appears to be a very inadequate, to say the least, effort by the FBI and the Department of Justice to get at the bottom of a very serious leak that damages the credibility of the Department and of the FBI.
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If I could ask just a couple of questions, and then we will submit additional questions in writingwe need a definitive answer to the following question: Was Mr. Jewell's telephone tapped?
Mr. SHAHEEN. No.
Mr. JOHNSON. No.
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. No, sir.
Mr. BARR. Mr. ShaheenMr. DeFeo, do you have any contrary information?
Mr. DEFEO. No.
Mr. BARR. Okay. And to follow up, I think it was some questions from the gentleman from North Carolina about the crime lab, did ATF offer the use of their crime lab?
Mr. JOHNSON. For the Centennial Park bombing, yes, sir, they did.
Mr. BARR. Okay. Was that offer immediately accepted?
Page 157 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JOHNSON. No, it was not.
Mr. BARR. Why not?
Mr. JOHNSON. Again, we deemed it to be an act of terrorism.
Mr. BARR. But it was a bomb?
Mr. JOHNSON. It was a bomb, and weI made a determination to send the evidence to Washington, to our lab, because they have capabilities that exceed the lab in Atlanta of ATF.
Mr. BARR. When was the evidence from the blast itself sent to the FBI lab, using the date of the bombing as day one?
Mr. JOHNSON. My recollection, as we gathered, it was flown to Washington virtually immediately.
Mr. BARR. What, if any, specific procedures were in place before the bomb to disseminate information publicly about security and about the law enforcement effort? Was there a specific chain of command with accountability that could be followed up on with regard to releasing information publicly about security?
Mr. JOHNSON. Congressman, I don't knowI don't think there was anyif you're referring to some sort of joint public relations or public capability to get that information out, one of the things we were faced with in this situation is there's no commander of all law enforcement resources during the Olympic games.
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Mr. BARR. Well, it'sand I understand that, and that might be something that we would look at in the future, but I'm a little bit concernedit's not like we're operating in the dark here and we don't have prior history to guide us. Four years ago, Waco, we saw a tremendous tragedy occur that, by all accounts, was occasioned at least in part by information being leaked in advance of a certain phase of an operation. We've seen other cases throughout our history compromised because of leaks of information. I have to say that, yes, there certainly was a very complex situation here. Whether or not it was unique in the history of mankind is irrelevant; it was a very complex situation here with several different jurisdictions, but, here again, it wasn't the first time that either the Department of Justice, the U.S. Attorney's office, or the FBI, or ATF, or Atlanta PD, has been faced with an interagency situation that they know in advance is going to be sensitive and there may very well be occasion to have to release information publicly. Was it simply that each agency had its own procedures in place and that there was no coordinated effort to deal with the problem of releasing information?
Mr. JOHNSON. Well, if your talking about the specific situation with the bombing, we were the lead agency and we had an agreement with other agencies that were working in the investigation with us that we would all agree before we put any public information out and we would be the lead with respect to that. I'm not sure I'm addressing your question.
Mr. BARR. How much time do we have left for the vote? I do apologize to the witnesses. We will need to come back, briefly. We will go vote; we'll be in recess until we finish the votes, and then we will have a few important follow-up questions. We appreciate the indulgence of the witnesses. We're in recess until the last vote.
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Mr. BARR. The subcommittee will be in order and reconvene.
Let me follow up on a couple of the questions that I had earlier before we had to recess for the votes.
We've determined that at least the initial materials, the initial evidence, was sent to the FBI Lab right away. When was it tested? Was it tested immediately at the FBI Crime Lab and the results made known to the Atlanta office right away?
Mr. JOHNSON. It took some period of time, Congressman.
Mr. BARR. Is there anything that the ATF Lab could not have done, other than DNA testing?
Mr. JOHNSON. My understanding is there's some latent fingerprint work that our lab can do that they're not capable of doing.
Mr. BARR. Is that something that would prevent them from conducting those tests, a number of which I know they can do very adequately in Atlanta, and then the additional tests being done later?
Mr. JOHNSON. Well, actually, we are going through an evolutionary process as a result of the January and February bombings where that's actually going on right now. Members of both labs are meeting to discuss work-through issues. We brought our people out of the lab, who had certain expertise, down to Atlanta and have visited with them. I understand they've exchanged evidence. Well, we've been able to evaluate evidence from the expertise that we can bring to it. For those two bombings in Atlanta, they continue to discuss it and work through a routine.
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Mr. BARR. So, that would tend to expedite the analysis of evidence in a way that would make it easier for the investigators in the field to move forward. Is that correct?
Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, sir.
I think over this year, as we have evolved through those three bombing incidences, that the contact between the two agencies, particularly in the lab area, is being refined and we're moving forward, and I think that from an operational level down there we've been able to work together so well that I would say it is an example of how you do it.
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Congressman Barr, could I expand on that comment?
Mr. BARR. Briefly.
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. As a result of some of these issues, there's been high-level meetings between the leadership of the ATF and the leadership of the FBI and there's a whole litany of issues that we're going through resolving, to make sure that we have adequate responses and solutions to some of these issues. That's been, actually, a pretty successful process.
Mr. BARR. So that's something good that's come out of this whole unfortunate incident?
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Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. I think so.
Mr. BARR. Okay.
We were also talking previously about wiretaps, and we determined there were no wiretaps placed on any of the phones, any phones utilized by Mr. Jewell. Were there any other types of listening devices employed against Mr. Jewell?
Mr. JOHNSON. On July 29, 1996, the day before we attempted the interview, the incident that is being so publicized, a GBI agent, working with us, was wired up and went in and had a discussion with Mr. Jewell in his residence over an hour or two. That's the only thing that I can think of.
Mr. BARR. Is that the only use of a listening device against Mr. Jewell? That one incident?
Mr. JOHNSON. All that I'm aware of.
Mr. BARR. You would be aware of it, I presume?
Mr. JOHNSON. I would think so. Yes, sir. I don't recall any other scenarios.
Mr. BARR. None others were authorized.
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Mr. JOHNSON. No, sir.
Mr. BARR. Okay. Have the results of that been provided to Mr. Jewell through his attorneys?
Mr. JOHNSON. I don't know, sir. I can't respond to that. Maybe OPR people may know, particularly, Mr. Shaheen, as a result of the investigation.
Mr. BARR. Okay. Has the results of that hour or so conversation that was recorded by the Bureau been made available to Mr. Jewell through his attorneys?
Mr. SHAHEEN. I think that's the Ataway interviewwe're unaware of that, Congressman. We sought and were refused the cooperation of both Mr. Jewell and his attorneys. We're unaware of what they received from the Bureau.
Mr. BARR. Okay. If you'll could provide any additional information on that and followup please.
Just a couple of other questions. We talked, Mr. DeFeo, about the fact that the universe, as it were, of people with information that was subsequently leaked was in the neighborhood of 500 or more persons. Focusing in, though, specifically on the information that was leaked, concerning the search warrant affidavit details therein, were there 500-some-odd people that had access to that information prior to it being leaked or is the universe of people that would fall into that category significantly smaller?
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Mr. DEFEO. The universe is significantly smaller in that area and we had more in the way of concrete leads.
Mr. BARR. And of those people that had access to that information, how many of them were interviewed?
Mr. DEFEO. Unfortunately, I cannot tell you with any degree of certitude and, therefore, would prefer to submit that in writing, if we may, so it will be precisely accurate.
[See Appendix D, page 117.]
Mr. BARR. There were people interviewed that fell into that category and were questioned about the leak of that information, though. Is that correct?
Mr. DEFEO. Mr. Chairman, to my recollection, there were, but the reason I am equivocating and temporizing is it's a peculiar situation which would be more comfortable to explain, if we might do it, by letter, simply because of the fact that there are still outstanding leads which I would hope not to jeopardize by discussing them in open session.
Mr. BARR. I'm not sure that indicating whether people have or have not been interviewed with regard to those leaks, that had access to it, would jeopardize anything.
Page 164 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. DEFEO. That's correct, sir. If persons were interviewed, it was a very restricted number because of the nature of the information that was available to us.
Mr. BARR. Were any of those people placed under oath?
Mr. DEFEO. In that situation, I think they were not because we only place under oath Bureau employees. We do not place citizens under oath in the context of an investigation of that nature. I realize this sounds like I'm being deceptive. I'm simply hoping that we'll have a forum in which we can explain this a little better.
Mr. BARR. I'd appreciate that and will explore that with the chairman, because I think that is relevant.
If I could, Ms. Jackson Lee, ask unanimous consent, for just 1 more minute, and then I'll turn it over to you?
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Fine.
Mr. BARR. Mr. Shaheen, could you explain for the benefit of all of us, and the public as well, the difference between a suspect and a subject?
Mr. SHAHEEN. A suspect is someone that's in the general realm of suspicion by the investigative agency. A subject is someone on whom criminal allegations were centrally focused and probably has criminal exposure.
Page 165 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. BARR. Now a subject may or may not be subject to Miranda warnings. Would that be a fair statement? It would depend on the circumstances?
Mr. SHAHEEN. That is right. Depending on custodial/noncustodial status, right.
Mr. BARR. Would it also be fair to say that, once a person moves from a suspect category to a subject, that any questioning once they're in the latter category would be subject to Miranda?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Normally, yes, sir, they would.
Mr. BARR. And again, if you could, looking back, specifically Mr. Jewell, precisely, when did he become a suspect and when, if ever, did he move from that into the category of a subject?
Mr. SHAHEEN. I'm not certain that he moves during the interview and after the interview into the category of subject. He, at all times during the interview that is the subject of this intense scrutiny, was a suspect and was voluntarily present, and was in a noncustodial setting; and he was told when he showed up, in fact, at FBI Headquartersand he was allowed to proceed there in his own pickupthat he was free to leave at any time. I don't believe his status as a suspect changed, Congressman.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Would the gentleman yield?
Page 166 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. BARR. At any time he never moved into a higher category of interest?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir. He did not move at any time.
Mr. BARR. If I could, Mr. Bono, if it would be possible to call on Ms Jackson Lee for her questions?
Mr. BONO. I just want to ask you a question as a prosecutor, because, again, I don't understand the law that much.
Mr. BARR. Okay, with unanimous consent, there will be no objection.
Mr. BONO. If you arrest someone and read them their Miranda rights, which are in now, and you say, ''Kings X, only kidding,'' are you really reading that person their Miranda rights or are you not reading them? I mean, there's a big crack here that I don't understand, as just a common person and not a lawyer, but it appears to me that, if a guy said, ''I'm just kidding, this isn't really your Miranda rights,'' I would assume I didn't get my Miranda rights.
Mr. BARR. Well, it raises some very complex questions that can have ramifications far down the road in an investigation about whether that evidence that might be solicited thereafter, or before that point, is proper or would be subject to a motion to be thrown out.
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If the gentleman would indulge, what we might do is come back for a second round of questioning in which you could ask, specifically, some followup questions of our witnesses, who are very learned in those areas.
Mr. BONO. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. BARR. At this time, I would recognize the gentlelady from Texas, Ms. Jackson Lee, for 5 minutes.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thank you, Mr. Chairman.
To the FBI representatives that are here: Do you believe that Mrs. Jewell, Mr. Jewell's mother, and Mr. Jewell, are owed an apology?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. The events surrounding July 29 and 30, in late July of 1997, I deeply regret the news leak. I deeply regret that Mr. Jewell, who at that time was a suspect, his identity became known to the press. I will say this, though. I think the FBI did not intentionally, nor did they intend, to deprive Mr. Jewell of any constitutional right. He was interviewed as a suspect; he came to the office freely and willingly; he called his attorney; he spoke to his attorney; he decided to end the interview and left the office.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Johnson?
Mr. JOHNSON. I think I'd have to answer it in this same manner. We were aggressively pursuing individuals who had planted that bomb and I think its very unfortunate that Mr. Jewell's name got out to the public, because we have 300or have had since that time300 suspects or more, in this case, whose names have not been revealed.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Bryant, you made a comment that Mr. Jewell was able to talk to his attorney. I'm a little confused. I might not have heard all of your conversation.
Before you answer, let me acknowledge the tragedy of the incident, and that this oversight hearing would not in any way want to inhibit a vigorous allowing of investigations by the FBI to protect the safety and the sanctity and the quality of life of those of us in this Nation, and we appreciate what the FBI have done along these lines for years and years.
We think, however, at least let me speak for myself, that in this instance, we have some serious and severe problems that go beyondas you've indicated, Mr. Johnsonwhen I say indicated, what you've characterized as an aggressive investigation.
Mr. Bryant, what I understood was that there was some difficulty in the attorney, Mr. Bryant, who attempted to reach his client, during the time that he was present with the FBI. Are you suggesting that there was a relaxed atmosphere where Mr. Jewell was able to be in contact with an attorney on that first visit or that visit that dealt with the video or the representation that there was a video for training?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Well, as I understand the factual situationand please bear with memy understanding is Mr. Jewell's attorney, Mr. Bryant, had been contacted by Mr. Jewell and, as I understand it, Mr. Bryant called back to the FBI office in Atlanta, Georgia and was connected to a switchboard operator that did not know who Mr. Jewell was, since he's not on the staff or part of the law enforcement team there. Subsequently, as I understand, there was a second phone call by Attorney Bryant for Mr. Jewell into the command center, where he was then, I believe, placed in contact with Richard Jewell.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. Is that accurate, Mr. Johnson, because Mr. Bryant has indicatedand I do appreciate operators may not always have the facts if they were looking for information and may not connecthowever, this was an important enough issue. My understanding is Mr. Bryant was not connected on the first call. How are you explaining this subsequent call? I understand he could not reach his client or was frustrated in not reaching his client for a period of time. At least his ability to represent Mr. Jewell was thwarted.
Mr. JOHNSON. We had the Olympic Games underway. The office, literally, had hundreds of people working there. Mr. Jewell's name was not a household word at that point in time. I believe that the operator just did not recognize the name and did not know with that where to put the call through to. The second call, she sent it to a supervisor, who quickly figured out what the situation was. We were notI don't believe there was any effort to try to deceive or keep Mr. Bryant from trying to get to his client.
Mr. BONO. Will the gentlelady yield?
Ms. JACKSON LEE. If the gentlemanif the chairman is going to yield me additional timeI'd be happy to do so.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. [presiding] I'll yield you a couple of minutes of additional time.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I appreciate that.
Page 170 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. MCCOLLUM. Without objection. If somebody could object. Nobody's objecting.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I yield, Mr. Bono.
Mr. BONO. Just to give you further information, there is a great deal of confusion on that very issue that you're talking about, because the lawyers represent that they, in fact, did talk to command center on the first call that they made in their attempt to reach Mr. Jewell. However, these gentlemen are claiming that they only spoke to an operator. The log indicates that they were on the line for 7 minutes and that they were transferred to somebody else, who wasn't a receptionist, and informed that they didn't have him; he wasn't there; and they virtually didn't know anything about it. It's peculiar that if the receptionist was confused, why she just didn't say, ''I don't know, goodbye.'' But, there were 7 minutes and they were on hold for several minutes during a transfer. I would say, I have requested for that very issue to be cleared up, but it certainly isn't clear to me, and I just thought I'd pass that information on.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I'm reclaiming my time. I thank you, Mr. Bono; that is a very important point. I think the 7 minutes, so there is a lag in that, and that is something that we would need the gentlemen to explore further. I have some other questions that I'd like to raise with you.
I understand that testimony was given on a matter that I would like to get a copy of from the individuals of the FBI. The directive that Director Freeh sent to the field telling FBI agents not to engage in deceptive plays to get people to waive their constitutional rightit's the understanding that testimony was given along those lines. Can we get a copy of that directive? We would appreciate it.
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Mr. JOHNSON. Yes.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right, thank you, very much.
[The FBI has informed the Subcommittee that no directive was issued.]
Ms. JACKSON LEE. The other question that I would have in proceeding: Why did the FBI, why when the FBI wentlet me ask this first question: Mr. Bryant, when the FBI went to Mr. Jewell's home, was he an arrested person at that time or what category was he in when you went to his home?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Could I refer that question to Mr. Johnson?
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Be more than happy. Mr. Johnson?
Mr. JOHNSON. No, ma'am, he was not.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right.
Mr. JOHNSON. The purpose was to conduct noncustodial, non-accusatory interview. He was notthere was no intention to arrest him through any of that process.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. When you went to his home, what was the category he was in? Is that the same?
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Mr. JOHNSON. Same category.
Ms. JACKSON-LEE. And you had an affidavit, I mean not an affidavit, a search warrant?
Mr. JOHNSON. No.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Did not at that time?
Mr. JOHNSON. No, ma'am.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. What about the time when you took hold of his possessions? What category was he in or is that the same time?
Mr. JOHNSON. He was still a suspect in the case. He has never been arrested.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. So you were looking to do a noncustodial search. Is that my understanding? Or a noncustodial interview at his home. Is that my understanding?
Mr. JOHNSON. My understanding, from the information that's been made available to me by the agents who conducted the interview, that they asked him if he could be interviewed: ''Do you want to be interviewed in your home or would you like to come to the office?'' They tell me that he wanted to be interviewed; that we had not until that time done a thorough interview of him, even though there had been four or five short interviews with him over a period of 2 or 3 days; we wanted to do a thorough and complete interview. He said, ''I would rather, because there's so many media around my home, I would like to go to your office and do it.'' That's the way it's been portrayed to me. He did not want to go in the car with them, because it would have the appearance of custodial, and he followed them in his personal vehicle.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. And I remember that. Let me make myself clear. When you went back to the home, or went to the home, whatever days later that washelp me understand when that was.
Mr. JOHNSON. The next day.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Next day? What status did he have when you went to his home the next day?
Mr. JOHNSON. The same status he had when he had left the office, noncustodial.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right.
Mr. JOHNSON. The difference was on the next day we had a search warrant for the residence.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. That's what I'm trying to understand.
Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, ma'am.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. And Mrs. Jewell was at home at that time? Does your recollection
Page 174 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JOHNSON. I don't know. I don't have a recollection if she was there or not.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right. The searchthe warrant that you had, as I understand it, on the affidavit, there were a series of factors. Does that include: Didn't have a girlfriend; people called him strange; or was there some other points to the affidavit that we might have missed? What was the driving force? One motive was attributed that he wanted to be in law enforcement, wanted the publicity? Was there something else that was telling at that time that made you move on the search warrant?
Mr. JOHNSON. We had a whole variety of information through interviews, witness contacts, that sort of thing, that were compiled into that search warrant. That was presented to a magistrate judge who believed that we had probable cause to conduct a search.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Has the FBI ever been turned down by a magistrate judge with that kind of data, requesting an affidavit, then, for a search warrant?
Mr. JOHNSON. I have no idea.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. DeFeo, one of the pointsI'm sorry, Mr. Johnsonby going with the search warrant you still tell me that he was not a suspect?
Mr. JOHNSON. No, I didn't say that.
Page 175 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Ms. JACKSON LEE. He was not arrested?
Mr. JOHNSON. Right. His status was the same as it had been the day before. He was a suspect.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Then my question is the media scenario: Were they already there, or did you bring a load with you when you went with the search warrant?
Mr. JOHNSON. We never bring any media with us in a situation like that. They had camped in front of his house hours before we went to attempt to do the interview on the 30th.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. In that instance, is there any judgment that might have been utilized at that point? You had a search warrant; I'm not sure whether there was a time frame on it; I know timeliness is of the issue, or is of importance, where that could have been handled in a more appropriate manner, and I would like Mr.DeFeo to answer the question of the leak and why these folks were camped out in front of Mr. Jewell's home
In retrospect, could there have been any other manner utilized to pursue your search warrant? The way you did it in the broad daylight, if you will, and I'm not suggesting that you would have frightened everyone to death, because there is a security question and we certainly are glad that there was no tragedy that occurred because of his being under suspicion. But I mean, that was paraded beforeyou talk about various casesI don't know if he could have gotten a jury in the world that would not have been tainted by that whole show of marching up those steps, with all those cameras, and systematically taking things out. In retrospect, what else could have been done under those circumstances where you did not have an arrested person, you had possibly a suspect?
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Mr. JOHNSON. I'm not sure there's anything we could have done. That warrant was signed about 11 o'clock, or 11 to 12, is my understanding, the night of the 30th, after the initial attempt to interview him. We discussed the possibility of going that night, but, you know, that also has an appearance when your going in at midnight to do a search. But we also had reason to believe at that point in time that he might be involved in the bombing. If that were the case, and he had evidence in his home, he may destroy it, and so time is of the essence and we couldn't wait. We discussed that, but we couldn't wait 3 or 4 days until, perhaps, the media left, to do it. I think that would have been irresponsible of us.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Ms. Jackson Lee, you've actually consumed about 10 minutes, including, or in addition to, the time to Mr. Bono. I'll come back.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. You've been very kind, Mr. Chairman. Could I make sure that Mr. DeFeo answers my question about the leak? Can he get one sentence in, in case I have to run to another meeting?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Sure, sure, sure.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. DeFeo, there was a lot of talk about internal investigating on how that leak occurred. What is your role or what is your opinion on that, determining how the leak occurred?
Mr. DEFEO. I limit my remarks to the leak regarding the identity of Mr. Jewell.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. That's fine, Mr. DeFeo.
Mr. DEFEO. The best indications are that it occurred locally in Atlanta. Unfortunately, as indicated in the Director's statement, the direct universe of people who personally knew about that information before it was published was in excess of 500 people, and the logical investigative step would be to interview those 500 people to find out who else they told before the date of publication. That obviously leads to a universe of interviews of up to several thousand people. We made the cost-effective determination not to pursue that investigative track; instead, we pursued specific avenues of investigation that appeared more promising. They weren't very promising. We have essentially uncovered nothing in this area, and we are, frankly, hoping that the litigation brought, or to be brought, by Mr. Jewell against various news media will be productive of leads in that area.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Chairman, I thank you for your indulgence. I would simply say, I hope as part of our oversight we look into that leaking, and an investigation of that. Thank you.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Ms. Jackson Lee, and I will yield myself some time here. We'll start the 5-minute clock, but I'm going to be liberal with myself, as I was with you, and we'll certainly come back to Mr. Coble, Mr. Barr, and Mr. Bono, or others if they wish to ask more questions.
From what I understand, and I missed some of this testimony, but I've been briefed on it, we have some pretty big holes that haven't been asked about today, so please bear with me. Mr. Shaheen, from your investigation, can you tell us, why did the FBI decide to videotape the interview of Jewell and isn't that an uncommon occurrence and inconsistent with the recommended non-adversary approach to an interview?
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Mr. SHAHEEN. It is done, from time to time, Mr. Chairman, videotaping. The decision was made to videotape him in order to preserve the record of his interview for analysis by the Profiling and Behavioral Assessment Unit out of Quantico, in the event that they did not get there in time. It is not an infrequent occurrence, but that is the reason for the videotaping.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. It was only their explanation to Mr. Jewell as to what this was all about that got them into trouble; is that not correct? It's not the fact they were going to videotape it?
Mr. SHAHEEN. That it was a first-responder's, for purposes of committing to permanent form, a first responder's interview?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. That's right.
Mr. SHAHEEN. Well, that is recounted in the report. There happened to be a professional photographer out of Quantico, employed by the FBI that was down there, making a tape of the FBI's extensive involvement in all different phases of the Olympic coverage, and he expressed an honest delight at interviewing what he viewed was a hero, as a first-responder. I think he, and our report indicates this, planted the seed by way of suggesting that, gee, they were going to get videotaping machinery and equipment from the Atlanta area, and he said, ''I've already got my stuff here. I'd love to include excerpts from the videotaping in my commercial-grade tape that I'm going to do of the FBI's entire Olympic coverage. Why don't I just use my stuff?''
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They acceded to that, and so that was on the tip of their tongue and on the edge of their mind when they went to Mr. Jewell's home and when he evinced, by facial expression, a concern or tentativeness about being videotaped, the first thing out of their mouth was, ''We're doing it as a first-responder's interview.''
Mr. MCCOLLUM. In other words, a first-responder being the first one on the scene?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Exactly. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. ''Since you're that, and we want to use that as an illustration, here's what it's all about.''
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And to a degree or another, that could have been a misleading thing?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Now, did you find that the ruse was used to lure Mr. Jewell to the FBI offices to be interviewed or merely to calm his concerns over the fact that the agents wanted to videotape the interview for the reasons you just described?
Page 180 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. SHAHEEN. We found that it was the latter. It was to allay his concern.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. So it wasn't designed at any point, in your judgment, to lure him down there, to get him to go to the interview? They were willing to ask him and take their chances on that?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Standing, freestanding?
Mr. SHAHEEN. We found that, yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Mr. Shaheen, did the FBI violate Mr. Jewell's Sixth Amendment right to counsel by continuing to interview him after he called his lawyer?
Mr. SHAHEEN. No, sir. The witnesses we interviewed and the circumstances that were reviewed in the course of our investigation, suggest that he did not have a Sixth Amendment right because there was no adversarial situation with respect to the government. At the time, he was not a subject, nor a target.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. So given the circumstances surrounding the interview at the time, the agents were not legally required to give the Miranda warnings to Mr. Jewell; is that correct?
Page 181 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. SHAHEEN. That is correct.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. In what way were the Miranda warnings improperly given to him? When they were giventhey didn't have to give them, right? But when they were given, I believe you have concluded they were improperly given.
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir. Mr. Chairman, you have a hard time persuading the agents who got the instructions from the Director to give them that they didn't have to give them. The people who received that instruction felt they wanted some
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Oh, I understand that, but constitutionally they didn't have to give them; they were ordered to give them. I understand that.
Mr. SHAHEEN. You're right. The error in judgment occurred when they introduced the Miranda warnings in the context of the ruse or the ploy, that it was in the setting of the videotaping for purposes of first-responder's benefit.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. It's when one of the agents said, and I'm quoting from your report, if I believe I'm correct, ''We're going to use it for the . . .,'' telling Jewell this, ''We're going to use it for the purposes I told you before, but in order to do so, I want to go through it just like it's a real official interview, okay? So, what I'm going do is, I'm going walk up and introduce myself to you, basically, tell you who I am, show you my credentials, just like we're doing a professional interview, okay? And then, I'll just ask you a couple of questions, like your name and your age, and I'm even gonna go as far as to advise you of your rights.''
Page 182 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC That's where the problem came in, right?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir, that's correct.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Okay.
Now, Mr. Johnson, when this all took place in the context of this moment when that quote I just gave was given, were you, or to your knowledge, Mr. Tubbs, aware that the agent who did this, or either the agents who were present, were going to frame it in this manner when they gave the Miranda warnings?
Mr. JOHNSON. No, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. What can you tell us about what went on that preceded this with respect to how Director Freeh got involved and how this whole Miranda rights situation unfolded. I understand that, despite all that's gone on here today, you have not been asked that particular description to be given, and I'd like for you to do that.
Mr. JOHNSON. All right, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. You were there, first of all, am I correct?
Mr. JOHNSON. I was there.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And you were there at the beginning when Jewell was brought in, but you were not necessarily in the room the whole time this was going on when he was being interrogated, were you?
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Mr. JOHNSON. I was not in the room at any point in time when he was being interrogated
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Right.
Mr. JOHNSON [continuing]. Although I was not very far away.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right, I just want to lay that predicate. So we're talking about you're being outside the room, but you were the lead person in charge of the FBI office there. So, you were involved. So why don't you start by just telling us at what point did Director Freeh get involved. How did this Miranda rights thing come about, and what did you know that was said, as best as you can recollect?
Mr. JOHNSON. Okay.
Let me back up a couple of hours, before Mr. Jewell arrived at our location. My best recollection of what had occurred was that early afternoon we had discussions about moving more rapidly to interview Mr. Jewell than we had planned and the strategy that we developed because we had a fear that somehow his name might get out. There was so many press in Atlanta. We had on the order of 15,000 press people in that area. Actually, we were outnumbered by press. We were concerned about the fact that we had so many people working in the command post that, frankly, maybe information would get out. We decided to move up the time we would interview him. We initially planned to do it on the 31st. We backed it down to that day and we sent the agents out to his residence to either interview him at his residence or, if possible, bring him back to the office. I had authorized that they film him to do the interview, as Mr. Shaheen said, in order that we might study the interview to determine, with the behavioral scientists, how we would go forward after initial interview.
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That first interview was to be non-accusatory, noncustodial, literally to get Mr. Jewell to talk about his whole involvement leading up to, and including, the bombing; and let him tell us anything he wanted to tell us. Later, if there were holes in that, we would explore that. But the initial plan was to do this interview.
When the agents went out, the press had already camped in front of his house; there were literally 10 or 12 crews, as I understand it, right in front of his house. One of the two agentsexperienced agentswho was sent to interview him had been one of our press liaison people before. He was recognized by one of the members of the press and they came up to the car and our people did not want to indicate anything as to what was going on, and they left the scene and went to a parking area nearby and called the office for instructions. They said, ''The press is all over his home; what do we do?''
They sat there for several hours. I don't know why. We had a number of things going on, but sometime close to 5 o'clock, we again said go back out; we have to do our job; we can't be thwarted by the presence of the press; we must try to interview him. You either interview him in his home or, if he will come to the office for a noncustodial interview, have him come to the office; and it's his choice, in the instructions that were given.
At about 5 o'clock every day, we had a conference between the leadership in the Atlanta office. Again, I was overall in charge. We also had other Special Agents in Charge from various field divisions who had come to be watch commanders for me and to work through this process and an awful lot of experience on the scene. We went into a discussion with Mr. Bryant, Mr. Freeh, and others. In my recollection, the United States attorney was present on the Atlanta side, and we were in a conference call.
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Just before going into that meeting, I received word that The Atlanta Journal had published an article, in a special edition, that Mr. Jewell was a suspect in the investigation and we were appalled. I think the term I've used was ''devastated''; it was really out there.
The agents went to his home at about that point in time, knocked on the door, in spite of the fact that the place was covered with press, and briefly asked Mr. Jewell if he would consent to an interview. My understanding is he said, yes, I would like to do a thorough interview; it hasn't been done now. My understanding, he asked them if he was being placed under arrest, so he knew this was a serious situation. And they said, absolutely not, we can interview you here or you can come back to the office. He came back to the office and we were in conference. I did notI failed to tell the director that we were taping the interview.
I was unaware that the agents were going to use a ruse. That's not to be critical of them at all. They have that authority to do that. They are very experienced agents. Frankly, I had not thought through the process of, what if he asked, ''Why are you filming this thing?'' I just authorized the filming.
He agreed to come back. I'm certain the Director would have to speak for himself, but we discussed a number of things that were going on: potential other suspects in this situation. During that conference, the Director brought up the possibility of giving him Miranda warnings. We, in Atlanta, I think universally opposed it. We explained and discussed with him that it was a noncustodial situation; that's been clearly discussed by Mr. Shaheen. My recollection is he tabled it at that point in time.
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Then we received word, I believe during that, that Mr. Jewell was downstairs and was in the process of the beginning of an interview. After that, my recollection was after we concluded that conference, some period after thata few minutes, perhapsthe Director called me and said, I want you to advise him of his rights. I was in the presence of at least one other, two SAC's; Special Agents in Charge from other divisions were with me, the United States attorney, my legal counsel, and another assisting United States attorney out of the southern district of New York. We all had discussed with him, we encouraged the Director not to do this, and he said, clearly to me, do it.
You want me to continue?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. No, you've done a good job of that description. I'm not going to take up a lot more of the time before I let some others get involved, but I do want to go over one or two points, just for clarification while we're right here at this moment.
When the statement was then made, you must have brought one of the agents outthey'd gone back inaccording to the description we've had from OPR and from Mr. Jewell and his attorney, so there's some in and out time, with regard to this interview?
Mr. JOHNSON. Right.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. At no time when the agents came out and were doing this interview do you recall any comment by them or any comment to them that would go in the direction of making, or having made, the kind of predicatory comments that I read to you earlier when the Miranda rights were being given? That is, this ruse type of comment about, ''I'm going to walk up, introduce myself; we're gonna tell you who I am, show you my credentials, and we're gonna do this like it's really in real life, but it's really for a video,'' that type of thing. You didn't know that was going on? They didn't say anything about it?
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That apprehension that was shown by the officers about the idea of there being a warning given at all didn't come through, that, gee whiz, Mr. Johnson or Mr. Tubbs, I've gotta go back in there and figure something out or this guy is going to shut up and not tell us anything if I go give him the Miranda warnings? Did that kind of sense come out?
Mr. JOHNSON. Not the way you described it. However, when I had one of the agents pulled out of the interview as they were gathering background information, he came to me and to us, and we were in my office, with those Special Agents in Charge, the United States attorney, that I described before. We said, ''The Director has ordered that you give him the Miranda warnings.'' He was very upset. He said, ''That is not required in this situation. We believe that if we do that, Mr. Jewell will immediately ask for an attorney or leave. I respectfully request that we not do this.''
Mr. Tubbs, in various ways, and the United States attorney and I allperhaps most emphatically by Mr. Tubbswas, you do understand that we are giving you a direct order? You have to go in there and do this. But, you don't have to walk in the door and immediately pitch a Miranda advice-of-rights form in front of him. You must get it in at some point, when you've completed the background information on him, but it must be done.
He went back in the room. I think Mr. Shaheen could discuss, perhaps more exactly, what the agents have said that occurred.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I think you've already said thiswere you told about the ruse at any point?
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Mr. JOHNSON. Not until later.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And when was later?
Mr. JOHNSON. My recollection, probably 2 days later.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And you didn't overhear somebody else being told about it until then?
Mr. JOHNSON. Congressman, I have no recollection of anything like that.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right.
Mr. JOHNSON. I think I would remember that. I have racked my brain for a year.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right.
Let's define something, Mr. Shaheen, for us. Again, I want to put closure to this. Precisely, in your view, what was the, quote, ''ruse?'' Was it this statement I've read from, when the Miranda warnings were given, or was it a set of circumstances about the videotaping and the way it was presented to Jewell from the moment that the request for him to come down to the office was made to him for an interview?
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Mr. SHAHEEN. Mr. Chairman, I think the ruse, or ploy, was the communication to Mr. Jewell that he was participating in a videotaping involving first-responder's for training purposes.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Even though that was not designed to lure him down there, as such?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. You've testified to that. But it still was a ruse. Why was it a ruse?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Because that was not the real reason the Bureau was videotaping him.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. In other words, they never told him they were video
Mr. SHAHEEN. It was a deception.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. The real reason they were videotaping him was for psychological studies.
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir. The real reason they were videotaping him was to have that available, in a permanent form, in the form of videotape, for the profiling and behavioral
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. But you just wouldn't ever tell anybody that anyway? We call that a ruse, but it would be of no value to you if you told them, ''Hey, we're taping you because we want to study it with our psychologist later.''?
Mr. SHAHEEN. That's right.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I mean that doesn't make any sense. So, what I'm getting at is the public, in my judgment, shouldn't see anything wrong with the fact that he wasn't told that might be used for psychological profile; what would be wrong would be if he was being lured down there for that purpose. Or what was wrong, and you did seem to find wrong, is then the way the Miranda warnings were characterized to make him think that perhaps that this was all part of this taping''We've got to give you the Miranda rights to look good on tape.'' I mean, that's the way it comes across to me. Am I right?
Mr. SHAHEEN. The wrongful conduct was the introduction of the Miranda warnings in the ruse setting.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. In the manner in which it was done?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And that's what, Mr. Johnson, you did not know about until a couple of days later? It's not that you didn't know about the taping, that it was going to take place, or that the psychological study of it might happen, but it was the fact that the Miranda warnings were being conveyed in this very indirect way that I've read. Is that correct?
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Mr. JOHNSON. Well, to be absolutely correct, it was probably weeks later before I realized that Miranda warnings had been presented, as Mr. Shaheen describes it, in that manner.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. But you didn't know about that? But you knew about the taping itself?
Mr. JOHNSON. I authorized the taping.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Right. Now last, and I'm just going to nail this down, as far as Director Freeh is concerned, there's been a suggestion by Mr. Wood, one of the attorneys for Mr. Jewell here today, that Director Freeh requested a question be asked of Jewell during this interrogation. Do you have any recollection of that, Mr. Johnson?
Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, I do.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And at what point, and when, and what was the question?
Mr. JOHNSON. My recollection, and I'm not sure if Mr. Bryant can verify thisMr. Bryant had called me sometime that afternoon, and advised methis is early afternoonthat the Director, if we were to interview Mr. Jewell, that he wanted a particular question asked by the agents. That question is: Do you think that the bomb may have been designed to go after law enforcement officers? I wrote the question down in longhand; I gave that question to one of my supervisors or ASACSit's not clear in my mind who I gave it to at that point, because there were so many things going onand instructed him to provide it to the agents.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. That was done well before the interview began?
Mr. JOHNSON. My recollection that, yes, sir, that's correct.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And was that the only question, that you're aware of, the FBI Director asked?
Mr. JOHNSON. The only question I'm aware of.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Is there anything that Director Freeh did to intervene, or suggest to the conduct, or how the conduct would be done of this interview, that you can recall, other than that question, and other than his direction to give the Miranda warnings?
Mr. JOHNSON. No, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Mr. Bryant, what about you? Is there anything you can recall from listening on your end where Director Freeh got involved with this interview, before or during its course, on July 30th, other than suggesting this one question that Mr. Johnson just gave us, with regard to the motive for the bombing and the question of the Miranda warnings being given, which obviously, Director Freeh asked for? Anything else other than that Director Freeh said or did, that you're aware of, to influence or suggest the conduct of this interview?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. My memory of that day is the only thing I can really recall directly is the discussion we had in the command post about the Miranda warnings and the discussion with Atlanta, and the ultimate decision by the Director to ask that they be given to Mr. Jewell.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. And you were present at that time?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. I was present.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Were you listening on the phone?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. We have, in the command post at FBI Headquarters, we have a conference phone, which we've used. When we have a major investigation, we use the conference technique, and we get all the offices or the people involved and everybody in the room can hear what's going on.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. So you heard a speaker phone for all of this?
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right. Mr. Coble, do you have other questions?
Mr. COBLE. Mr. Chairman, I know it's getting late and I won't use my 5 minutes. I've been in and out because of other meetings. Let me make a statement, then with your permission, Mr. Chairman, a request or suggestion.
Many of us, and I'm probably guilty of it too, gentlemen, place the FBI on a pedestal. Then, when mistakes are made, my gosh, its exacerbated, because the FBI made it. The FBI's not supposed to make mistakes. I realize you guys are not perfect, but this was not done properly.
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Mr. Chairman, I don't get to watch television often, but I'm a sucker for cop shows. I like the intrigue of cop shows. From time to time you'll see on these cop shows a high profile crime is committed and 4 or 5 days elapse and there's no arrest, and the chief of police will call in the investigating officers, and say, ''Listen, the mayor's on my back; let's get somebody arrested.'' Well, in you all's case, it would be the Attorney General or the President is on your back. I think at that point, Mr. Chairman, the investigating officer probably abandons his or her objectivity and assumes a subjective role, by george, we've got to arrest somebody. I'm not saying that's what happened in Atlanta, but it may have, because, obviously, the wrong guy was targeted. I think we need to emphasize the importance of proper arrest, rather than prompt arrest.
My suggestion, Mr. Chairman, if I mayI'm not convinced that Director Freeh is the primary wrongdoer here. He's the skipper of the ship; he's going to have to ultimately answer. But I'm not convinced, Mr. Chairman, that Louis Freeh is a wrongdoer in this scenario. I'm thinking aloud now. What would you say, Mr. Chairman,and I realize we can't have these hearings to go on eternallybut, we need to resolve it, because Richard Jewell needs to see it resolved. What would you say, Mr. Chairman, about inviting Director Freeh up here, for yet another visit, to maybe lash it down once and for all?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Well, Mr. Coble, if you'll yield, I certainly would consider that. We discussed it earlier today, at Mr. Conyers request. As you are aware, we did have Director Freeh testify.
Mr. COBLE. I know that.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. The question is, can wehaving had this hearing today, and explored all of thisget a better answer? Actually, that may not be a bad idea, for the simple reason that, had he been here today, the normal courtesies of committees would be to have had Director Freeh be the first witness; and then we wouldn't have had the benefit of all the information we've gathered here today. So, your suggestion has some benefit; certainly I want to withhold judgment and let us discuss it among ourselves and perhaps with Director Freeh, but it seems like that might be a prudent thing to do.
Mr. COBLE. Mr. Chairman, if you will note again, I have not used my entire 5 minutes, and yield back my time.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Fair enough, Mr. Coble. Mr. Barr, do you have other questions you wish to ask?
Mr. BARR. Just sort of a wrap-up question for these four gentlemen. We've already today identified, with your help, a couple of areas where improvements can be made and problems that were highlighted as a result of this tragedy and the other subsequent problems with the investigation, one being better use of ATF crime labs; better coordination between the FBI and the ATF on prompt and continuing analysis of bomb scene evidence; and not pigeonhole things, because it is a particular type of bombing as opposed to another type. That I hope continues to move in that direction of better coordination, which I think will help not only the agencies, but our citizens, as well.
From the standpoint of sort of a headquarters approach here, Mr. Bryant, are there any other specific lessons that can be gleaned from this and improvements that either have begun to be made or implemented, or have already been, or will be in the future, as a result of the some of the problems we've seen here with leaks; with problems of trying to coordinate an effort of this sort; or anything else that you all are working on, please?
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Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. The only thing that I can suggest to you is, one, with regard to leak investigations, probably in my 29-years' investigative experience, probably the most difficult type of issue to resolve is a leak when you have a large universe. I know that there's a lot of comments and concerns about the leak investigation, but they're hard to do. We do a lot of them, and they're tough to do. As far as the issues regarding the ploy and the constitutional rights, I think the Director has addressed that with instructions to the field offices, which you requested a copy of that communication, which will be submitted to you.
The only thing I would just like to add is, the FBI and the law enforcement agencies involved in this investigation have tried very hard. There's a lot of effort going forward to bring whoever is doing these bombings in your home State to justice. There is no political pressure, or lack of objectivity, on the part of the FBI or the ATF or the GBI. We're there because what they're doing, they harmed a hundred people in that park that night; they killed two people, and they caused a lot of harm and damage. The ethic of law enforcement is to try to resolve that. We're not perfect, but we sure try.
The thing of it is I think with Mr. Johnson, and the people involved in this investigation, it's not flawless, but we've done some very good things there, and we've developed a lot of suspects, and we will solve this matter.
Mr. JOHNSON. Can I follow up, sir?
Mr. BARR. Sure.
Page 197 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JOHNSON. I think I'd be remiss if I didn't make a comment about the agents involved in this. They arethe two that were involved in that interviewhave distinguished records in this organization. I can't, honestly, explain what happened in that room, but I know that they were operating under real and perceived pressure. They wanted to solve this crime. I am positive they never intended that what they were going to do would violate Mr. Jewell's rights. I don't believe they were ever headed in that direction.
We grow up in an environment, in this organization, where it is drilled into us from the first day about each individuals rights. That's important to me, to everybody in that office, and everybody in the FBI. I was the captain of the ship, and I'll take responsibility.
Mr. BARR. Are there any other specific areas, Mr. Johnson, from your perspective in the field as an agent and as a supervisor out there, other than those particular areas that you've touched on already, where we can or have already learned some lessons, where we can improve the procedures, so that these same problems don't crop up again?
Mr. JOHNSON. You know, one of the things that keeps jumping out at me, and I don't have an answer for, is the press in this situation. We have spent probably a part of every day since that bomb went off trying to figure out how to avoid another situation that happened to Mr. Jewell. Every time that we are planning investigative efforts, it's a problem. We spend time trying to avoid them and havoc, creating an environment where somebody's name is going to be brought forward and we end up with another nightmare. I think that's something that really needs to be explored.
Page 198 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. BARR. Were there, Mr. DeFeo, were there individuals outside of the FBImaybe Mr. Shaheen could weigh-in with this alsooutside of FBI or Department of Justice employees, that had access to the information that was leaked, particularly the damaging provisions from the search warrant affidavit, that were not Federal employees?
Mr. DEFEO. Congressman, with respect to the leak of Jewell's identity, there were a substantial number of non-Federal agencies and personnel. With respect to the search warrant information, my initial inclination is to indicate that I doubt that was available to any non-Federal personnel.
Mr. BARR. That's one area, and I don't mean to beat a dead horse, that I think we could do a lot better in trying to get to the bottom of that, certainly. Is one of the lessons here, unfortunately, at least with regard to some of these other agencies that we were dealing with down there, that they simply cannot be trusted with sensitive information and that will cause less coordination in the future? Is that something we need to look at?
Mr. JOHNSON. Let me address that one, Congressman Barr. Probably 24 hours before that article was published about Mr. Jewell, the other SAC's came to me and said, with all the people that have knowledge that are working from these various other agencies in this command post with us, there's a real possibility that his name is going to get out, or the other suspects that we had at the time. I made a conscious decision to continue with him there, and partly because we are constantly criticized for not being a cooperative organization, that we don't share information, that we're the bad guys, and this is the fallout. Since we brought this operation down to just ATF, GBI, and the FBI, I can't find any evidence that anything has leaked out of the Atlanta office.
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Mr. BARR. Which sort of leaves a pregnant question out there, that it could be some of the local agencies in Atlanta that were the problem and that we do need to go back and, as I say, it's unfortunate, because coordinating activities of this sort, coordinating our drug task forces, and so forth, is very, very important, and you have to have that trust of all of the different agencies because they are going to be, if you are going to coordinate, they are going to be privy to very sensitive information. I understand what you're saying; you're sort of caught on the horns of a dilemma, that there is a need to coordinate; there is pressure to coordinate. It's certainly cost-effective to coordinate, but then, again, that means that you're necessarily going to have to give information to others over which you have no strict line of command and control. It's very unfortunate that this has highlighted that with regard to possibly the city of Atlanta, but, hopefully, we will get to the bottom of it.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I'm going to recognize Mr. Bono, but I have some followup on that. Mr. Johnson, is the command center where you were referring to just then, that this investigation was being conducted out of, the same one that I visited with you on the outskirts of Atlanta, where you'd set up the general security for the Olympics? I did go in there before the Olympic games and you gave me a tour of that.
Mr. JOHNSON. It is, Chairman.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. That also brings to mind that you were very clear to point out to me at that time that the local law enforcement agency people were very carefully selected who were in there; it wasn't just any Tom, Dick, and Harry. So that makes it more disturbing, doesn't it? Because you really didn't haveyou know you had a lot of people in there, but it wasn't like conducting this out of the local police station.
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Mr. JOHNSON. Well, I don't want to point fingers at anybody, Chairman; I don't know who did it.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I understand.
Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, we tried to control it. The only problem was that, once the bomb went off, we were inviting many more people in because we were in a large investigative situation and suddenly the numbers swelled.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. So it was more people than what I saw there, then?
Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. By a lot?
Mr. JOHNSON. Literally hundreds.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Okay, well, that made it more difficult.
Mr. Bono, you're recognized.
Mr. BONO. Thank you so much, Mr. Chairman, for letting me ask some questions.
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I must admit I'm still thoroughly confused. I just want to say this: I don't think anybody wants the FBI to be the bad guys. They are American pie, apple pie, and people like the FBI, and like to know that they're going to watch over us all; but, I have a terrible problem. Mr. Chairman, when a law enforcement body reads someone their Miranda rights, and says, ''We're only kidding. We're only kidding. I'm going to pretend I'm doing this, but it's just a situation comedy, okay?'' And then some expect that to hold up on a constitutional basis. I have a terrible time with that.
This non-lawyer, as far as I'm concerned, he was not read his Miranda rights, under the conditions that the law expects law enforcement to read Miranda rights.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Will the gentleman yield on that?
Mr. BONO. Yes, sure.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I just want to point out that may not be severe enough in some people's minds, but that officer who did that was judged to be wrong; he was suspended without pay for 5 days for doing it. That doesn't mean it's right; it doesn't mean an example shouldn't be made, but I think the record should be clear that what you're pointing out has been acknowledged as wrong.
Mr. BONO. I accept what you're saying. On illegal search and seizure, we let murderers get away because we didn't do things properly. We're admitting they didn't do something properly and the guy is not guilty, but they're saying he was read his Miranda rights. When someone gets away with illegal search and seizure for murder, and we uphold the Miranda rights here, that seems to be a contradiction. Again, I'm a non-lawyer, but that's a big contradiction to me.
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Let me just go on. Secondly, what I think is incredibly strange is what you, Mr. Shaheen, were doing this for a ruse. Mr. Johnson was making an educational film, and Director Freeh was not aware of a film at all. You had three different scenarios going on at exactly the same time, by the FBI. That is, again, very questionable behavior, Mr. Chairmanat best, horrible communication.
Mr. Johnson, why would you say to whomever was conducting the interrogation, ''You don't have to read him his Miranda rights right away; work it into the movie.''? I don't quite understand why you wouldn't say, when you got a direct order from Director Freeh, to say, listen, give this guy his Miranda rights, because that's what Director Freeh said, but you're kind of saying to the Director: Work it into the movie, so it'll play. Why would you do that?
Mr. JOHNSON. I've never used the term ''movie.''
Mr. BONO. Pardon me?
Mr. JOHNSON. I have never used the term ''movie.''
Mr. BONO. I did, I used it; tape, whatever you want to call it. It seemed like an educational tape to me.
Mr. JOHNSON. The two agents are in the room with Mr. Jewell conducting an interview.
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Mr. BONO. I'm clear on that.
Mr. JOHNSON. I have no idea where they are in the scheme of that. We would like to
Mr. BONO. In the scheme of what?
Mr. JOHNSON. Of the interview.
Mr. BONO. Yes?
Mr. JOHNSON. I have no idea whether they have just found out where he lives, or whether they have nearly completed the interview. So to walk in and just say, as soon as you walk in, ''I'm giving you Miranda rights,'' he's clearly going to say, ''I'm going to end this interview.''
It was our position that we wanted to have him continue to talk to us so that we could determineit would have helped us resolve this thing sooner.
Mr. BONO. Well, then you're in on it. Excuse me, but then you're aware of it, that you didn't want to disturb the ruse if your saying you didn't want to disturb the movie because Director Freeh said, ''Read this guy his rights.'' And it wasn't under any specificso his concern was that it was done legally. For you to say, you can work that in at a convenient point, I question that. Okay, you don't have to respond.
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I would like to clear that up, Mr. Chairman. I would like to clear up the phone call discrepancy. The attorneys represent that they got the command center on the first call that they made to the FBI. They were on the phone for 7 minutes; that's documented right here. We are being informed by the FBI that they were told, ''We don't have him.'' There was a lady confused or receptionist confused''We don't have him here; we don't know anything.'' And there was so much randomity, they just couldn't handle it. That's a discrepancy, I'd like to clear that up because they were on hold for a long period of time and talked to two different people and that isn't relayed to us in this conversation. Thank you.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Bono. I understand, Ms. Jackson-Lee, you would like some more follow-up questions. Let me say we're not going to go on much longer with this, Mr. Johnson needs to catch a plane; but I do want to give this side some time, and I'm saying this so we put it in the context and perspective, we're on a second round. You personally have been given the equivalent of two rounds earlier, but because we haven't had Democrats here, I'm going to recognize you another 5 minutes or so, but I don't want it to go on longer that. I'm admonishing you because we really do need to let him catch his plane.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Chairman, we work so well together; I know you will not mind me responding to that and say I certainly will be cooperative. I do realize that my good friends on the Republican side have had probably about four or five rounds in total of their extensive questioning. This is a very important role and responsibility. I'll do my best, but I do think we should have a modicum of equal time.
Let me say, I am in between several meetings, so I do offer to those my apologies, but as well to recognize that I dashed back because this is a very important meeting and hearing and important for me to ask the questions I have to ask.
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Let me make sure that I remind you, Mr. Bryant, that I would like for this committee, and certainly for myself, a copy of the directive that had to do with the instructions by Director Freeh about engaging in deceptive plays or ruses with respect to witnesses, and I just wanted to have that again for the record.
Mr. Shaheen, if I might raise questions with youdid your office look into the leak, and did you make any efforts to discover who told the press that Richard Jewell was a suspect in the bombing? And what did you discover as you were doing that?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Our instructions from the Attorney General, Congresswoman, were to investigate the interview of Mr. Jewell, and the constitutional implications that were raised, the questions raised in the course of that interview.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I'm glad you mentioned that video. Mr. Chairman, I'm very interested inMr. Shaheen, I'm very interested in viewing that video. What is the status of that video? And I'm making a request, on the record, to view that video.
Mr. SHAHEEN. We have that video, and we will seek the Attorney General's permission to make that available to you.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I appreciate it. Thank you very much.
Therefore, then, you're suggesting that we can't get intonot we can't get into, but in terms of the origins of the leak or attempting to discover where the leak might have come from, you did not explore that?
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Mr. SHAHEEN. That was not ours initially, Congresswoman. As I indicated earlier, the Attorney General reserves her assessment of it, and we are her eyes and ears in matters of this sort, and we will probably have a say before it is concluded.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I appreciate it. Then, you've already established that the Attorney General, in her wisdomand you know I have great respect for General Renofirst approached your office to do the investigation. Is that my understanding how you were first ordered into the investigation by the Attorney General?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, ma'am. We're not a part of the FBI. We're a part of the Attorney General's Office of Professional Responsibility.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Did she give any reason why you were originally contacted or what would have been her reasoning on that?
Mr. SHAHEEN. We didn't interview her because she was not a logical interviewee subject, but we have learned that, not only because of the constitutional concerns, we have general oversight over the FBI when they include law
enforcement personnel, as well as attorneys for the Government, and this was such a case, in a sense of the attorney for the Government being employees of the U.S. Attorney's Office in Atlanta.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. So, there was not a forwarding memorandum that said, for these reasons, I'd like for you to investigate this issue?
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Mr. SHAHEEN. No, there was a direct oral communication from the Deputy Attorney General, on behalf of the Attorney General, and herself, former Deputy Attorney General Gorelick, to me, personally.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right. To meet with Gorelick or meet with General Reno?
Mr. SHAHEEN. She had just met with the Attorney General and she called me and said you're to do this.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Go for it.
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, ma'am.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Do you know, Mr. DeFeo, did the FBI OPR stop as you begun, or did you all continue in your investigation?
Mr. DEFEO. What occurred was that we suspended independent inquiries and made our resources available to assist Mr. Shaheen's office in the conduct of the interviews.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Say that again for me, I'm sorry.
Mr. DEFEO. Yes, we suspended our independent inquiries and simply made our resources, our agents, available to assist Mr. Shaheen's office, as he directed.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. You've already answered, Mr. Shaheen, and I appreciate it. You are usually looked to investigate attorneys, in that realm, as I understand it. Help me understand how the Justice Department felt that you had grounding. Was it sufficiently serious a matter, or was it because, as you indicated, you didn't want those who might be under a cloud to investigate themselves?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Both.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. In that instance, then, was there a reason we did not call in the Office of the Inspector General, who had wanted to participate in that investigation?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes, ma'am, there is. There was a reason for that. The reason is that the legislation establishing the Inspector General's Office in the Department of Justice really contemplatedand I urge you to check the legislationthat the Inspector General must refer all allegations involving attorneys, criminal investigators, and law enforcement personnel to OPR for investigation, and exempted from jurisdiction from the Inspector General, the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Administration. It is only pursuant to an order of the Attorney General, published in November of 1994, that the Inspector General was given any oversight responsibilities with respect to the FBI and DEA. The legislation prohibits them.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. What year was that?
Mr. SHAHEEN. 1994.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. So you would suggest that they were limited? They didn't have the grounds to look into this?
Mr. SHAHEEN. In the legislation, they were totally limited. Under the Attorney General's order, they were given some jurisdiction.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Some limited jurisdiction?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Yes.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. You've come into my next question. In terms of this being an oversight hearing to correct and to help prevent incidences like this happening, and not thwarting certainly the need for the FBI to investigate, what legislatively could have been done? Do you think giving the Inspector General those privileges, legislatively, is an appropriate vehicle, in having the ability to investigate these kinds of situations?
Mr. SHAHEEN. I don't believe in giving the Inspector General legislatively that discretion. I believe that would result in an abdication of the Attorney General's discretion, which I think she has sought to guard and discharge zealously. I think she feels strongly about that.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I think we, certainly, however, can respect the fact that questions would arise, because initially FBI agents were investigating themselves. I welcome your further thought about that.
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Mr. SHAHEEN. Allegations against the Inspector General's personnel are investigated by the Inspector General.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I realize that, and certainly there are many instances that we might review the self-investigation, though we certainly are not casting aspersions on individual integrity.
Let me just follow a line of questioning, Mr. Bryant and Mr. Johnson, and again, throughout this record, I have offered to include in it, Mr. Chairman, language from Justice Brennan's opinions dealing with the Fourth Amendment. Might I just note Davis v. Mississippi, in the United States Supreme Court, and just say that while the police have the right to request citizens to answer voluntarily questions concerning unsolved crimes, they have no right to compel them to answer. Mr. Johnson, do you know whether or not the meeting, first visit, where Mr. Jewell just testified that he thought he was being helpfulcould you describe for me whether that was an intimidating session and whether or not, in any instance, Mr. Jewell was compelled to answer any of the questions while he was in the course of this video training tape?
Mr. JOHNSON. I do not believe it was intimidating. There were two agents interviewing him, which is customary in one of these situations. There is absolutely no evidence that there was any effort to compel him to do anything.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Well, again, we've been here a long time, but there seemed to have been some testimony by Mr. Jewell that, when he thought to ask for his Miranda rights or when there was an occasion to do so, somebody came back at him and said, ''Is there something wrong? Are you fearful? Why would you even need your Miranda rights?'' Is that an attempt to compel someone to answer even though they were not arrested and, as I understand it, had come down voluntarily as you all have offered to say?
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Mr. JOHNSON. I don't believe it was.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Pardon me, I'm sorry, sir.
Mr. JOHNSON. No, I don't believe it was intimidating or an attempt to compel.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. All right, so that kind of exchange would not fall in that category, in your assessment?
Mr. JOHNSON. Correct. Viewing all that was going on at the time in that interviewI have reviewed the tape since that timeI don't see that in him or his actions.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I would welcome the opportunity to view that tape as well.
Let me justMr. Chairman, I'm drawing to a closebut in any event, let me ask you how you related and interacted with the local law enforcement authorities. Was the numbers of 500were those high numbers on the side of local law enforcement or was that on the side of the FBI? Can you just give me sort of a ballpark of how many folk you had in your Atlanta area? I imagine that you had a national outreach going, but just in the Atlanta area. So that 500 we keep talking about, 503, whatever number, where did they come from?
Page 212 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. JOHNSON. They come from local ATF, GBI, other agencies, secret service, that were involved with us initially. We had actually, my recollection, 1,300 people, in Atlanta, at the time. Now, not all of those were involved in that investigation or in dealing with Mr. Jewell or other suspects. Perhaps Mr. DeFeo can more clearly define the numbers, but that gives you a ballpark figure of where these things are coming from.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Then, Mr. DeFeo, was the high end on Federal law enforcement or was the bulk of the 500 in sheriffs and police departments, and various people in Atlanta or Georgia?
Mr. DEFEO. Unquestionably, the bulk of that number were Federal law enforcement personnel.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. So we dominated the numbers of investigations. Certainly, we, as having oversight and authorization, we certainlywe have those numbers, but the high numbers was in the Federal scenario.
Mr. DEFEO. Yes, ma'am.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Let me ask this, in terms of you coming to closure, we don't have closure. This was on the tail-end of a series of threats, accusations, and fear about militia. Certainly, this was after the Waco bombing. Did you not follow any immediate leads dealing with militia throughout this Nation, and particularly, in Georgia?
Mr. JOHNSON. Absolutely.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. You found nothing that would have allowed you to pursue that as vigorously as you pursued Mr. Jewell who has indicated, and no evidence has suggested, that he ever was affiliated with the militia?
Mr. JOHNSON. We have pursued all of them vigorously. I don't think I can get into more detail because it's an ongoing investigation, but, yes, we're looking at militias.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Bryant, you wanted to answer, it appeared.
Mr. ROBERT BRYANT. I just wanted to add, in this investigation, we've conducted over 13,000 interviews and we've followed over 14,000 leads and there's been numerous suspects all across the United States, and this investigation has been, and will be, pursued until it is solved.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Well, in concluding, let me just simply say, that is work that I do want to see go forward and I would imagine the chairman that called these hearings would not in anyway suggest that we are not looking for an effective and positive resolution to this great tragedy. I think if we have one incident of the Jewell family, then we have possibly, one too many. Similar to my comments that I've made earlier in the judiciary hearings, the efforts of the FBI and the COINTELPRO, in particular, as related to the civil rights and the intrusiveness into the lives of Dr. Martin Luther King, and many other civil rights leaders and activists. It was not a time that I was very proud of. This is not a time that I am proud of, and I hope that we can work together to ensure that you can do your job and that the individual rights that we hold so dear are protected.
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I yield back, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you very much, Ms. Jackson Lee, and I'm going to wrap up with you, but I've got a couple of loose ends; I'll do it very quickly.
Mr. Shaheen, is there any truth to the allegation that Director Freeh was actively involved in the planning for the Jewell interview?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Our investigation disclosed that he was not actively involved in the interview of Mr. Jewell.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Or the planning of it?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Or the planning of the interview.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Apart from suggesting one question to be asked of Mr. Jewell, was there any evidence that Director Freeh played any part, whatsoever, then?
Mr. SHAHEEN. Mr. Chairman, the suggestion that he had, the so-called Director's lead, is discussed in our report. That is the question to which Mr. Johnson addressed himself.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I know.
Page 215 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. SHAHEEN. We interviewed the Director. He does not recall even having that question asked.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. All right.
Mr. SHAHEEN. But beyond the instruction that Miranda be given to Mr. Jewell, that is the extent to which we are aware of his participation.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. And you feel you've conducted a good, thorough investigation, and asked anybody, who could be asked reasonably, questions that would have determined if he had a greater role than has been revealed to this point.
Mr. SHAHEEN. I would not have permitted myself to be present here today, Mr. Chairman, if I couldn't make that representation.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Shaheen.
A couple of quick, technical questions to get back on, I guess I can call them technical at this point. Mr. Bryant or Mr. DeFeo, or whoever was doing this area of the leak question: Among the 50 or so people, I understand, that have been interviewed with regard to that possibility, did you interrogate or interview anybody in the U.S. Attorney's office?
Mr. DEFEO. My recollection is that there was a preliminary inquiry done with the U.S. Attorney's office to find out how many people had access to the information in that office. We then evaluated the interviews done. I, in the course of the OPRexcuse meMr. Shaheen's office's investigation into this area, to my recollection, there's no further interviews of those people beyond that. That is a factual area I will check and advise the committee.
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Mr. MCCOLLUM. There are two deeply troubling matters with regard to the leaks that are left on the table unresolved. One of them is the thoroughness of the effort to actually discover the leaks. There are all kinds of leaks; they're all the time; they're around my committees. I'm on the Intelligence Committee, and I can tell you that's a very sensitive matter, and I know how troubling it is; I know how difficult it is; I know how hard it is to do. But I think there is still the sense out there that somehow when we get a leak like this, the ends of the earth aren't turned over to find who leaks as much as it should be; that, obviously, law enforcement looks first and foremost to the criminaland they do; you're supposed to do thatand, obviously, this crime is not solved yet.
So, no one is suggesting that you should devote more energy than you are to solving the crime, but there still is the pregnant feeling, right or wrong, that not enough has been done to find the leaker in this case. More to the point, perhaps, what troubles me in this area, and I've just got to comment on it, is that too many people were aware of the search warrant or affidavits, and too many people were aware, it seems to me, of Richard Jewell being a suspect, before the fact, be they Federal or be they local. I realize you've addressed some of that and I trust, Mr. Bryant, in particular, because you're the one who's got the watch, so to speak, with Mr. Freeh and others. It would seem to me we need to see more compartmentalization. The need to know is there. I mean, how many people really need to know something like this, at that stage, that you've got a suspect; or at that stage, the contents of the warrant or the affidavit for a warrant? It would seem to me that should be very narrowly restricted to the handful of people necessary to prepare it, to type it, and to issue the order, to take it to court, or whatever. It doesn't need to be 100 people, or whatever, and it certainly doesn't need to be 531, or whatever it was who knew about Jewell as the suspect. Again, that's a lesson to be learned. Nonetheless, when you start talking about that many people knowing it, its no wonder you can't find out who leaked it.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Chairman, would you yield for an inquiry? I have to go to the floor and I just wanted an inquiry before you get that answer.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Yes, ma'am. I'm not asking it as a question, I'm making it as a comment, but if you want to ask one last thing.
Ms. JACKSON LEE. Well, my inquiry is to you, Mr. Chairman. I wanted to make it because I am on the Democratic side, and the member here. I wantedcertainly, I think I can represent my colleagues by saying, and it's not directly on the point, but I wanted to make sure that you had heard, and I think you did, the desire to hear from Director Freeh, but I did not want any implication that anyone who has not appeared in this hearing roomDirector Freeh, who has not had a chance to respondis in any way accused, or any suggestions on our part of his involvement. I want to give him that respect; respect his leadership of the FBI; respect the FBI; and would hope that we'd have an opportunity, Mr. Chairman, to hear from Director Freeh. Is that my understanding, that we may have that opportunity?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Well, as I said beforewill you yield
Ms. JACKSON LEE. I'll yield.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Yes, the answer is in all probability, but we haven't discussed it with him; we haven't discussed it among ourselves; it's been sort of out here in the formal comments by yourself, Mr. Conyers, and Mr. Coble, but I would remind everybody, again, that while this may be beneficial and important at this stage, it is a fact that Director Freeh has testified before this committee, with the OPR investigation information in our hands, previously, and has answered, from his perspective, I think, most every question your going to ask him. Nonetheless, we may need, having had all of this today, to bring him back.
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Ms. JACKSON LEE. I'd encourage that, Mr. Chairman. Thank you very much.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Reclaiming my time here, just for the last bit here, I made that one comment; I won't belabor it. One very last thing with respect to any substance is 911there was a statement made earlier with respectby the professor who was herethat in terms of the affidavit for the search warrant, that anybody looking at this carefully, could have known, or should have known, that Mr. Jewell could not have been the one who did the bombing because of the fact that there was a 911 call, and some sequence of timing which would not have allowedhe could not have done it type of thing. Therefore, on its face, nobody should have sought to make him a suspect.
Mr. Johnson, you're the most directly involved in this. Do you know to what the professor's referring? Was there any look at the question of whether the 911 call was in
Mr. JOHNSON. The 911 call was made within minutes, one or 2 minutes, of the time that Mr. Jewell identified the package. So Mr. Jewell could not have made the phone call. I'm not sure I can draw the logic that says he would not have been involved in the bombing.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. Well, that's what the professor was trying to do. He was trying to say to us, I believe, that anybody with common sense would say he couldn't have made the call; therefore, he couldn't have been involved in the bombing.
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Mr. JOHNSON. Well, what if it's a conspiracy, Mr. Chairman?
Mr. MCCOLLUM. That's a good point. That's why I asked you the question, sir.
Then I want to conclude by focusing on you for a minutenot for negative reasons; for very positive reasons, Mr. Johnson. I think that the country owes you a debt of gratitude for 28 years of service. You're retiring this week as I understand it.
Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. I know for a fact that you put in hours and hours of time, dedicated to law enforcement, to protecting our citizens; that while we've been through the Olympic bombing, with some of its mistakes, and to some extent, you shared some criticism with respect to the conduct of this, and you said, ''I accept the blame, because it was while I was in charge in Atlanta this occurred,'' even though you didn't do the hands on stuff, necessarily, being criticized. I also know that you've been through a number of Olympics and a number of situations where you have been directly responsible for protecting the public, and done so very successfully. I suspect that lost in all of this discussion of Richard Jewell is the fact that the bombing that did occur in Atlanta was not within the protected perimeter of the FBI and its security, if I'm correct. If I'm incorrect, tell me, but my understanding is that bomb went off outside of the area that you were directly responsible for the security of. Now you were responsible for the investigation, but I don't think any major incident occurred in this Olympics, within the secured area of your domain, which is a remarkably large geographical area of the city of Atlanta. Am I correct?
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Mr. JOHNSON. You're correct, sir.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. So what I want to conclude with today is deserved praise for your work personally, and for that of your men and women who served under you with respect to the Atlanta Olympics, because I think that the unfortunate incident with Mr. Jewell has overshadowed a remarkably good job by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in conducting the safety and security concerns for this Olympic event. I want to commend you and wish you bon voyage, as they say, into private life. Thank you for your service.
Mr. JOHNSON. Thank you for your kind remarks.
Mr. MCCOLLUM. You're quite welcome, and if there's nothing more, then this hearing is adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 3:26 p.m., the subcommittee adjourned.]
A P P E N D I X
Material Submitted for the Hearing Record
The following articles were submitted and are on file with the Subcommittee on Crime.
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Laurie P. Cohen, Brand of Evidence, FBI Crime-Lab Work Emerges as New Issue in Famed Murder Case, N.Y. Times, April 16, 1997, at A1.
Joe Davidson, FBI Lab Is Faulted for Sloppy Work But Report Clears Scientists of Perjury, Wall Street Journal, April 16, 1997.
Ruth Shalit, Fatal Revision, Jeffrey McDonald's case against the FBI, New Republic, May 26, 1997, at 18.
Hon. BILL MCCOLLUM,
|Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto, P.C.,|
|Washington, DC, June 9, 1997.|
Chairman, Subcommittee on Crime,
House Committee on the Judiciary,
U.S. House of Representatives,
U.S. Congress, Washington, DC.
Re: Clarification of the Record Oversight Hearings on the FBI Crime Lab (May 13, 1997)
DEAR CHAIRMAN MCCOLLUM: I am writing as a follow-up to the testimony provided to the Subcommittee on Crime during its May 13, 1997 oversight hearing on the Federal Bureau of Investigation (''FBI'') crime lab. As an attorney for Dr. Frederic Whitehurst I submitted testimony prior to the hearing. This testimony was improperly criticized by Mr. Michael Bromwich, the Inspector General of the United States Department of Justice (''DOJ IG''). I hereby request that this letter, and the attached exhibits, be included as part of the official record in the hearing in order to insure that the record on these important issues is complete and accurate.
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In my pre-filed testimony I raised the concern that documents obtained from the FBI (pursuant to the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act and a court order) indicated that the FBI and the DOJ IG had reached improper agreements concerning the investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's allegations about misconduct within the FBI crime lab. Moreover, the testimony raised the issue that the lack of proper procedural safeguards for whistleblowers allowed these irregularities to exist.
Mr. Bromwich voiced his strong exception to this pre-filed testimony. He testified that it was ''false or materially misleading.'' I would like the record to reflect, as the attached material shows, that it was nothing of the sort.
The pre-filed testimony from me that was brought into question stated as follows:
One of the most disturbing revelations contained in FBI-released documents was correspondence between the FBI and DOJ IG. Exhibit 18. Letter from FBI OPR to DOJ IG. They reveal a high level of cooperation between the FBI and IG. Instead of the independence Dr. Whitehurst expected from the IG, the IG and FBI had entered into a secret deal, in violation of their own operating procedures, to allow the FBI full access to all of Dr. Whitehurst's letters, full access to the interviews of FBI employees and a co-equal role in writing the final IG report (although only the IG's name would be on the report). These agreements were reached behind Dr. Whitehurst's back and, had they been known, Dr. Whitehurst would have ceased cooperating with the IG. Only the intense public pressure resulting from the public attention concerning the crime lab, generated by the public disclosure of Dr. Whitehurst's allegations during the O.J. Simpson matter forced the IG to back off from the agreements with the FBI. However, the complete lack of written procedures and the failure to institute regulations required under the WPA [Whistleblowers Protection Act] allowed this collusion to occur.
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Testimony of Stephen M. Kohn before the Congress of the United States, House of Representatives, Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Crime, pp. 1213 (May 13, 1997).
After quoting from my pre-filed testimony cited above, Mr. Bromwich testified as follows:
Virtually every statement in that paragraph, Mr. Chairman, is false or materially misleading. In fact, there was a time when my office was investigating certain of Whitehurst's allegations. And the FBI OPR continued to investigate some of Dr. Whitehurst's allegations. You will notice that the letter that appears at exhibit 18 is dated, I believe, June of 1995. That was at a time before the corroborating evidence had been brought to my attention, which occurred in late July. And before I sought to take over the entire investigation.
What happened, Mr. Chairman, is when I found out about the corroborating information about Dr. Whitehurst's claims, under the attorney general order that governs jurisdiction involving my office, FBI OPR and other internal misconduct organizations within the Department of Justice, I went to the deputy attorney general and said that I believed that we needed to conduct the entire investigation. And that the investigative results would not be credible if the FBI did a part of the investigation. The deputy attorney general asked me to talk directly with the director of the FBI to find out whether he had any opposition to my taking over the entire investigation.
I met with Director Freeh on August 2, 1995, and I told him of my conversation with the deputy attorney general. And I asked him whether he had any objection to our taking over the entire investigation. I pointed out to himwhich he already knewthat some of Dr. Whitehurst's allegations were made against him personally in connection with the VANPAC investigation and the Moody prosecution.
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Director Freeh immediately agreed that wethis is, the Office of Inspector Generalshould take over the entire investigation, although he offered any support that the Bureau could provide. From that point forward, Mr. Chairman, it was people under my leadership that conducted the entire investigation. . . . So the suggestion that there was collusion between my office and the FBI could not be more false.
Testimony of Michael Bromwich before the House Subcommittee on Crime, reprinted in FDCH Political Transcript (May 13, 1997).
Mr. Bromwich never explained why the DOJ IG and the FBI agreed to ''jointly'' conduct the investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's allegations on June 15, 1995, as codified in Exhibit 18 to my pre- filed testimony. Instead, Mr. Bromwich testified that on August 2, 1995 an agreement was reached with the FBI for the DOJ IG to independently conduct the investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's concerns. Even if this were true it would not excuse the original collusion between the DOJ IG and the FBI.
However, a number of documents produced by the FBI under a court order contradict Mr. Bromwich's version of events. These documents demonstrate that the agreement between the FBI and DOJ IG to jointly conduct the investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's allegations continued for many months after August 2, 1995.
For example, on September 8, 1995over 1 month after the alleged Bromwich-Freeh interactiona meeting was held between representatives of the DOJ IG and the FBI. Attachment 1, Gore to Glendinning (September 12, 1995). At this meeting it was agreed that documents would be shared between the FBI and DOJ IG. It was ''understood'' the ''investigation into SSA Whitehurst's allegations'' would be ''investigated jointly'' by the DOJ IG and the FBI. It was also agreed that FBI and DOJ IG would jointly ''interview SSA Whitehurst to obtain specific details concerning his allegations.'' Id. It was further agreed that, on the basis of this interview a ''determination'' would be made ''as to whether the allegations made by SSA Whitehurst constitute serious misconduct or are indicative of performance and/or management deficiencies by an FBI employee.'' Id. If it was determined that the allegations constituted ''serious misconduct'' the FBI and DOJ IG would ''jointly'' conduct the further investigation. However, if the misconduct was found to be ''performance-related,'' the matter would be referred solely to the FBI for administrative action. Id.
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Furthermore, the DOJ IG provided the FBI with a document which has not yet been produced by either the FBI or the DOJ IG. This document, ''enumerated'' the allegations Dr. Whitehurst had filed confidentially with the DOJ IG and was entitled ''draft memorandum from Thomas J. Bondurant, Assistant Inspector General for Investigations to Mr. Bromwich.'' Id.
On September 12, 1995 the FBI memorialized the understandings reached at the September 8th meeting and provided various documents to the DOJ IG. Id.
In addition, in September of 1995 the FBI obtained copies of letters Dr. Whitehurst had provided to the DOJ IG. In fact, the FBI acknowledged that no less then 29 FBI employees had ''access to or temporary custody of correspondence from SSA Whitehurst to the OIG in September 1995.'' Attachment 2, FBI Administrative Law Unit to Joseph C. Hutchison (February 9, 1996).
In or about September, 1995 the FBI appointed James M. Maddock the ''single point of contact'' within the FBI for matters related to Dr. Whitehurst. Attachment 3, Maddock to Jamie Gorelick, p. 2 (September 14, 1995). Presumably, had Mr. Bromwich met with Director Freeh on August 2, 1995 and obtained an agreement that the DOJ IG would be solely responsible for the investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's allegations, Mr. Maddock, who was employed by the FBI as the Deputy General Counsel, would have been informed of the agreement. Instead, Mr. Maddock noted that he understood that the investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's allegations would be a ''joint'' project between the FBI and DOJ IG. Id.
Page 226 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. Maddock's September 14, 1995 mernorandum to Ms. Gorelick. This memorandum was copied to numerous individuals, including the FBI General Counsel and the DOJ IG. Attachment 3. Mr. Maddock informed Ms. Gorelick that the FBI and DOJ IG ''would jointly investigate'' Dr. Whitehurst's allegations ''with the OIG being the lead agency and writing the final report.'' Id., p. 2. Mr. Maddock also confirmed that at least one aspect of Dr. Whitehurst's allegations was already the ''subject of an investigation'' by the FBI and DOJ IG. Id., p. 1.
On October 3, 1995 FBI inspector David Ries wrote a letter to Mr. Glenn Fine, the Special Counsel to the Inspector General. Mr. Ries again confirmed the ''previous agreement'' between FBI and DOJ IG concerning the investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's allegations. At this time the FBI was informed that the DOJ IG was ''still working out various details regarding how the overall laboratory inquiry will be conducted.'' Attachment 4, Ries to Fine (October 3, 1995).
Finally, it was not until November 6, 1995 that the FBI was officially informed that the DOJ IG investigation would in fact be independent of the FBI. Attachment 5, Ries to Gore (December 13, 1995). At this time the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility closed its Whitehurst file and informed FBI management, including the General Counsel and the Assistant Director of the Laboratory Division of the ''initiation of a separate investigation by the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General.'' Id.
On the basis of the factual record contained in the FBI released documents, my pre-filed testimony was not ''false or materially misleading.'' Rather, these documents demonstrate that there was no agreement whatsoever between the FBI and DOJ IG on August 2, 1995 for the DOJ IG to pursue its investigation into Dr. Whitehurst's allegations independently.(see footnote 1) It was not until November 6, 1995 that a decision was reached concerning the jurisdiction of the DOJ IG, according to documentary proof. Attachment 5. In addition, the FBI documents also confirm that between June, 1995 and sometime in October-November, 1995 the FBI and DOJ IG had agreed to jointly investigate and review the allegations filed with DOJ IG concerning the FBI crime lab and that documents between these two agencies had in fact been passed between them. The documents also confirm that it was only after Dr. Whitehurst's case was made public through publicity surrounding the O.J. Simpson matter did the DOJ reconsider the method it was using to review Dr. Whitehurst's concerns and appoint independent scientists to assist in that review.
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Thank you for your kind attention to this matter.
INSERT FOLIOS 1-10 HERE
Hon. WILLIAM MCCOLLUM,
|U.S. Department of Justice,|
|Federal Bureau of Investigation,|
|Washington, DC, June 13, 1997.|
Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary,
U.S. House of Representatives,
DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: I am writing on behalf of Director Freeh who is unavailable this week but asked that I express his appreciation for the opportunity to appear before you and the members of the Committee on June 4, 1997. The Director also asked that I respond in more detail to the Committee's interest in the review of past cases of the FBI Laboratory examiners who were criticized by the Inspector General of the Department of Justice.
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For the past year, a task force comprised of personnel from the FBI and the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice has been conducting a review of the cases potentially affected by the Inspector General's report on the FBI Laboratory. Although that review initially focused on cases implicated by Dr. Whitehurst's allegations, the task force is now coordinating a review of all cases in which defendants were convicted and in which any of the examiners criticized by the Inspector General played any role. As you know, the Inspector General's investigation criticized 13 examiners for various reasons including poor scientific work, inaccurate testimony, testimony beyond examiners' expertise, and scientifically flawed and improperly prepared reports. We have determined that all of the material scientific work and related testimony by these individuals must be reviewed to ensure that no defendant was deprived of his right to a fair trial. The process by which the task force is conducting this review is set forth below.
With respect to federal cases, U.S. Attorneys will be requested to identify the cases which resulted in a conviction (whether pursuant to trial or a guilty plea) in which a criticized examiner participated. With respect to state and local cases, the FBI will identify for each of its Field Offices the cases from their area involving the criticized examiners. The Field Offices will communicate with the contributing agencies and, if necessary, the local prosecutor to determine which of the cases resulted in a conviction (again, whether pursuant to trial or a guilty plea).
Once it has been determined that a case has resulted in a conviction, the Criminal Division will contact the federal, state or local prosecuting authority involved to determine whether the Laboratory's work was material to the outcome of the case. If the Lab's work was not material, the Criminal Division will obtain written confirmation of that determination.
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In any case in which the Laboratory's work may have been material to a conviction but the prosecutor needs additional information to make that determination, the Task Force will work with the prosecutor to determine the type of additional review that is needed and the appropriate person to conduct that review.
If after receiving the additional input requested (or after initial review of the case), the prosecutor determines that the Laboratory's work was material to the conviction, an outside scientist will conduct a complete review of the Laboratory's findings and any related testimony.
If the scientist determines that there was no problem with the analysis or testimony, no further action will be taken. If, however, the scientist identifies a problem with the analysis or testimony, appropriate disclosures pursuant to Brady v. Maryland will be made.
In addition, two examiners (Thurman and Higgins) were found to have altered Frederic Whitehurst's auxiliary examiner dictation. In order to ensure that we have identified all such alterations, and determined whether they had any substantive impact on the reports, the FBI will undertake a separate review process.
After determining if there have been any changes, the FBI will request an outside scientist to determine first, whether any such change was substantive, and second, whether the change was inappropriate.(see footnote 2)
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If the scientist reviewing the case concludes that a substantive change was made that was inappropriate, the FBI will take the following action: (1) if there was a conviction, the FBI will notify the Criminal Division of the alteration so that they may make whatever disclosures are necessary; and (2) if there was no conviction, the FBI will attach a memorandum to the Laboratory report regarding the change in the auxiliary examiner dictation.
The Director and I hope that this information proves helpful to the Committee in understanding the seriousness with which the FBI takes the Inspector General's findings. If you should have any questions, please feel free to contact me.
|William J. Esposito,|
Hon. BILL MCCOLLUM,
|U.S. Department of Justice,|
|Federal Bureau of Investigation,|
|Washington, DC, August 6, 1997.|
Chairman, Subcommittee on Crime,
Committee on the Judiciary,
U.S. House of Representatives,
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DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: During my testimony before the Subcommittee last week I was asked the status of the investigations into unauthorized disclosure of Mr. Richard Jewell's status as a suspect in the Centennial Park bombing and into the disclosure of information from the affidavit supporting the warrant for the search of Mr. Jewell's residence. I advised the Subcommittee, I believe in response to a question by Mr. Barr, that both those inquiries had been closed in May of this year.
After returning to the office, I realized that my testimony was in error. The inquiry into the disclosure of search warrant affidavit information is still ongoing.
There were a number of items of information to be furnished to the Subcommittee, which are currently being assembled and will be provided. However, I did not wish to wait for that process to be completed to correct my erroneous statement and to express my regret for not having been better prepared to respond to that area of questioning.
|Michael A. DeFeo,|
|Office of Professional Responsibility.|
Hon. BILL MCCOLLUM,
Chairman, Subcommittee on Crime,
Committee on the Judiciary,
U.S. House of Representatives,
DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: On September 29, 1997, Subcommittee member Representative Bob Barr wrote asking for information concerning: (1) What units of the Department of Justice and the FBI are conducting the Richard Jewell leak investigation? (2) How many persons have been interviewed thus far? (3) Of those interviewed, how many were placed under oath? (4) How many remain to be interviewed and when? (5) How many persons in total had access to the information on Jewell that was leaked?
In preparing a response to Congressman Barr's letter, I realized that a number of questions asked by Subcommittee members during the July 30, 1997, hearing also remained unanswered. There had been an indication during the hearing that questions in writing would be submitted, and we were awaiting those follow-up inquiries. As there is a great deal of overlap between Congressman Barr's more recent questions and those still outstanding from the July 30, 1997, hearing, I am addressing this letter to you as Committee Chairperson, and simultaneously corresponding with Mr. Barr and providing a copy to him, as I believe the following information is responsive to both the July 30, 1997, inquiries and to Congressman Barr's letter.
The FBI's investigative interest in Mr. Richard Jewell was disclosed to the news media between July 28, 1996, when he first came under investigation, and July 30, 1997, the day on which the Atlanta Journal Constitution publicly identified him as a suspect.
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Because of the cooperative inter-agency approach being followed in connection with Olympic security and the bombing investigation, approximately 200 federal, state and local agency personnel in nine separate agencies in Atlanta had direct access to the fact that Richard Jewell was being investigated for the bombing prior to the publication of that fact. Approximately 150 of those individuals were Atlanta Division FBI employees.
Over 120 employees assigned to FBI Headquarters had knowledge regarding Mr. Jewell's status prior to July 30, 1996. Because a 1800 hotline was set up at the Washington Field Office and its operators were briefed on the Atlanta situation in order to perform their duties knowledgeably, nearly 200 FBI employees in that office were aware of Jewell's suspect status. Finally 10 representatives from other government agencies were briefed by FBI Headquarters on the progress of the investigation at the time of the publication of Mr. Jewell's identity.
The above universe study indicates that approximately 530 persons had direct knowledge of the investigative interest in Mr. Jewell, which is referred to as the primary universe. That calculation does not address the secondary universe, that is superiors or co-workers who may have legitimately been informed by members of the primary universe of Mr. Jewell's suspect status, or persons who may have been told for no official, proper purpose.
The universe of persons identified as having access to the search warrant affidavit prior to the time it may have been leaked to the news media was approximately 150 persons in the FBI, U.S. Attorney's Office, and offices of the Magistrate and Clerk of the Court.
Page 234 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC With respect to the number of persons interviewed in connection with these investigations, my testimony of July 30, 1997, indicated that less than 50 persons were interviewed. I must explain that while the response was technically accurate, that was only by inadvertence, and my answer requires explanation. When I was asked concerning the number of witnesses interviewed, the number of over 40 witnesses erroneously came to mind because I had reviewed Mr. Shaheen's report on the circumstances of the Richard Jewell interview, and that is the number of persons cited therein. Those 40 plus interviews were done jointly by the Office of Professional Responsibility of the Department of Justice and of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
As I had not been briefed nor prepared myself on the leak inquiries before being unexpectedly called to testify I mistakenly cited the number of ruse-interview witnesses in response to the question about the number of leak interviews. The accurate information with respect to who conducted leak inquiries in connection with the Atlanta CENTBOM matter and the number and circumstances of those inquiries follows.
After this office ascertained the size of the universe of persons with knowledge of Mr. Jewell's suspect status, it was agreed with OPR DOJ in October, 1996, not to pursue wholesale interviews. In the absence of specific leads, over 500 persons would have had to be interviewed or required to submit sworn statements to canvass even the primary universe. Foreseeable responses about briefing superiors or informing fellow investigators would expand that number significantly. Common sense suggested the probability that one who leaks information would be willing to falsely deny doing so unless inhibited by fear of compromising evidence, which did not exist. It should also be noted that the leak of Mr. Jewell's status as a suspect involved law enforcement sensitive information, which is not criminally protected to the same extent as grand jury secrets or information which is classified or derived from court authorized electronic surveillance.
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The decision not to pursue active investigation was reversed within days, when a possible avenue of inquiry was identified. That particular avenue proved to be unproductive, as did several others received in subsequent months. In total, four non-Bureau individuals were interviewed, none under oath. One FBI employee was interviewed without an oath, while another was asked to provide a signed, sworn statement. The FBI employee who provided a signed, sworn statement and one non-FBI individual expressed a willingness to take a voluntary polygraph examination, but no examinations were considered to be warranted. The local crime reporter whose by-line appears on the article identifying Mr. Jewell as a suspect refused to be interviewed. These inquiries were conducted by FBI OPR, which reported the results to DOJ OPR.
In May, 1997, OPR DOJ was advised that the inquiry into the leak of Mr. Richard Jewell's identity as a suspect would be closed, given the size of the universe, the dubious utility of wholesale interviews, and the exhaustion of all logical leads. As Atlanta Division Special Agent in Charge Johnson suggested in his July 30, 1997, testimony, choices must be made between protection of information and cooperative sharing in a multi-agency effort such as the Olympics. We felt that a similar choice had to be made concerning the disruption to and diversion of resources from the underlying bombing inquiry which a massive leak inquiry would cause, all without any substantial probability of identifying a punishable party. It was my conclusion and recommendation that the inquiry into the leak of Mr. Jewell's status as a suspect should be closed pending the development of further leads, which most logically would surface during litigation by Mr. Jewell concerning the publication of his identity as a suspect. OPR DOJ concurred in the closing decision of May 14, 1997.
With regard to the possible leak of the Jewell search warrant affidavit, a criminal inquiry into theft of government property is still underway. Investigation was initially conducted by the Atlanta FBI office. The matter was taken over by FBI OPR, working under the supervision of DOJ OPR, in December, 1996. Since then a universe of approximately 150 persons with access to the affidavit during the pertinent time period has been established, including FBI, U.S. Attorney's Office and court personnel.
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As of this date, nine persons have been interviewed regarding the possible leak of the affidavit. Four are from the FBI, three from the Office of the U.S. Attorney, one U.S. Magistrate, and one court clerk. The FBI employees provided signed, sworn statements. Statements of the other witnesses were documented on unsworn FD302 interview forms. All of the approximately 150 members of this universe will be asked to execute signed, sworn statements concerning their knowledge of the unauthorized disclosure of either the search warrant affidavit or the identity of Mr. Jewell as a suspect. This investigative activity may be completed within 60 days absent delays in certain related forensic examinations. A determination whether to administer polygraph examinations will be made after consideration of the signed, sworn statements.
I hope that this information furnishes a complete response to the various questions asked by Mr. Barr and other members of the Subcommittee. Please accept my apologies for the misunderstanding concerning written questions which resulted in the long delay in preparation of this response.
|Michael A. DeFeo,|
|Office of Professional Responsibility.|
Hon. BILL MCCOLLUM,
Chairman, Subcommittee on Crime,
Committee on the Judiciary,
U.S. House of Representatives,
Dear Mr. Chairman:
This is in response to your request for information pertaining to questions asked of me during the hearing on the Office of the Inspector General's investigation of the FBI Laboratory.
Mr. Malone was under oath when he testified at the 1985 hearing concerning then federal judge Alcee Hastings. We examined 121 reports in response to specific allegations that Dr. Whitehurst's dictation had been altered. In 50 reports, his dictation was not altered in any way; in 24 reports, his dictation was altered but not significantly; in 26 reports, the dictation was changed so that the meaning was altered. Alteration of the remaining 21 reports could not be determined because the FBI could not locate Dr. Whitehurst's original dictation. We also reviewed numerous other reports that included Dr. Whitehurst's dictation in the course of investigating other allegations of misconduct. In those matters, Dr. Whitehurst had not alleged, and we did not find, any alterations of his dictation. The specific number of findings contained in the report regarding violations of duty is extremely burdensome to compile, and through discussions with staff, we understand that Congressman Conyers is no longer requesting the information.
Page 238 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC If I can be of further assistance about this matter, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Very truly yours,
|Michael R. Bromwich,|
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THE ACTIVITIES OF THE FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION (PART III)
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SUBCOMMITTEE ON CRIME
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
ONE HUNDRED FIFTH CONGRESS
THE ACTIVITIES OF THE FEDERAL BUREAU OF
INVESTIGATION (PART III)
JULY 30, 1997
Serial No. 60
Printed for the use of the Committee on the Judiciary
For sale by the U.S. Government Printing Office
Page 240 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOCSuperintendent of Documents, Congressional Sales Office, Washington, DC 20402
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
HENRY J. HYDE, Illinois, Chairman
F. JAMES SENSENBRENNER, Jr., Wisconsin
BILL McCOLLUM, Florida
GEORGE W. GEKAS, Pennsylvania
HOWARD COBLE, North Carolina
LAMAR SMITH, Texas
STEVEN SCHIFF, New Mexico
ELTON GALLEGLY, California
CHARLES T. CANADY, Florida
BOB INGLIS, South Carolina
BOB GOODLATTE, Virginia
STEPHEN E. BUYER, Indiana
SONNY BONO, California
ED BRYANT, Tennessee
STEVE CHABOT, Ohio
BOB BARR, Georgia
WILLIAM L. JENKINS, Tennessee
ASA HUTCHINSON, Arkansas
EDWARD A. PEASE, Indiana
CHRISTOPHER B. CANNON, Utah
JOHN CONYERS, Jr., Michigan
Page 241 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOCBARNEY FRANK, Massachusetts
CHARLES E. SCHUMER, New York
HOWARD L. BERMAN, California
RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
JERROLD NADLER, New York
ROBERT C. SCOTT, Virginia
MELVIN L. WATT, North Carolina
ZOE LOFGREN, California
SHEILA JACKSON LEE, Texas
MAXINE WATERS, California
MARTIN T. MEEHAN, Massachusetts
WILLIAM D. DELAHUNT, Massachusetts
ROBERT WEXLER, Florida
STEVEN R. ROTHMAN, New Jersey
THOMAS E. MOONEY, Chief of Staff-General Counsel
JULIAN EPSTEIN, Minority Staff Director
Subcommittee on Crime
BILL McCOLLUM, Florida, Chairman
STEVEN SCHIFF, New Mexico
STEPHEN E. BUYER, Indiana
STEVE CHABOT, Ohio
BOB BARR, Georgia
ASA HUTCHINSON, Arkansas
Page 242 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOCGEORGE W. GEKAS, Pennsylvania
HOWARD COBLE, North Carolina
CHARLES E. SCHUMER, New York
SHEILA JACKSON LEE, Texas
MARTIN T. MEEHAN, Massachusetts
ROBERT WEXLER, Florida
STEVEN R. ROTHMAN, New Jersey
PAUL J. MCNULTY, Chief Counsel
GLENN R. SCHMITT, Counsel
DANIEL J. BRYANT, Counsel
NICOLE R. NASON, Counsel
DAVID YASSKY, Minority Counsel
C O N T E N T S
July 30, 1997
McCollum, Hon. Bill, a Representative in Congress from the State of Florida, and chairman, Subcommittee on Crime
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Alschuler, Albert W., Wilson-Dickinson Professor, University of Chicago Law School
Bryant, Robert, Assistant Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation
Johnson, David Woody, Special Agent in Charge, Atlanta Regional Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Michael DeFeo, Assistant Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation
Shaheen, Michael, Jr., Director, Office of Professional Responsibility, Department of Justice
LETTERS, STATEMENTS, ETC., SUBMITTED FOR THE HEARING
Alschuler, Albert W., Wilson-Dickinson Professor, University of Chicago Law School: Prepared statement
Jackson Lee, Sheila, a Representative in Congress from the State of Texas: Prepared statement
Jewell, Richard: Prepared statement
Johnson, David Woody, Special Agent in Charge, Atlanta Regional Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation: Prepared statement
Shaheen, Michael, Jr., Director, Office of Professional Responsibility, Department of Justice: Prepared statement
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Material submitted for the hearing
(Footnote 1 return)
This letter is based upon documents obtained from the FBI. Dr. Whitehurst, through counsel, has also filed Freedom of Information and Privacy Act requests with the DOJ IG requesting access to their documentation relevant to the IG review. In violation of the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act, the DOJ IG has not produced any of the documentation requested by Dr. Whitehurst or forwarded by the FBI to DOJ for release.
(Footnote 2 return)
In some instances, a substantive change might be justified, as when the auxiliary examiner includes a conclusion outside his or her area of expertise.