DHS Inspector General Meets with Jan. 6 Committee Over Secret Service Redacted Texts


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(WASHINGTON) — The Department of Homeland Security inspector general met with members of the Jan. 6 committee behind closed doors Friday amid revelations about suppressed Secret Service texts from the day before and the day of the attack on the US Capitol.

The meeting comes after Inspector General Joseph Cuffari earlier this week sent a memo to the committee informing it that the Secret Service had deleted the text messages of January 5 and 6, 2021.

After Friday’s meeting, members called for transparency. Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., told ABC News Congressional Correspondent Rachel Scott, “We need to get to the bottom of this, but if these texts are missing, we’re determined to find them.”

“We just don’t know where the texts are. We do not know if the texts have disappeared or not. We don’t know what the context of their disappearance was if they disappeared – we just don’t know,” he said. “But we’re going to get to the bottom of it and we’re going to give a full report to the American people.”

Committee chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said lawmakers still don’t know if there are any other messages missing beyond those on Jan. 5 and 6.

“We are not sure. The IG said it made a significant request for information. And obviously, since he couldn’t get it, we really don’t know,” Thompson said.

Thompson said it’s “obvious” the Secret Service isn’t being cooperative.

In earlier testimony, former Trump White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson claimed she was told then-President Donald Trump physically assaulted members of his secret service when they refused to take him to the Capitol on January 6.

A source close to the Secret Service does not dispute that the former president demanded to go to the Capitol immediately after his rally on the Ellipse that day.

The Secret Service, in a lengthy statement Thursday night, blasted the inspector general’s letter to the committee.

“The insinuation that the Secret Service maliciously deleted text messages following a request is false,” Anthony Gugliemi, the agency’s chief communications officer, said in a statement. “In fact, the Secret Service cooperated fully with the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) in all respects, from interviews, to documents, to emails or SMS.”

Gugliemi said that in February 2021, the Secret Service began factory resetting their cellphones as part of a previously planned three-month system migration. During this process, data residing on some phones was lost, he said.

The DHS inspector general did not immediately respond to an ABC News request for comment.

Katherine Faulders, Rachel Scott and Allison Pecorin of ABC News contributed to this report.

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