Secret Service Director Murray to delay retirement amid multiple probes into agency's Jan 6 response

The most recent controversy regarding Secret Service is missing text messages requested by the House Jan. committee

Updated: July 29, 2022 - 10:40am

Secret Service Director James Murray says he will "briefly delay" his retirement amid multiple investigations into the agency's response to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

Murray's decision, reported first by CBS News, comes as Department of Homeland Security lawyers decide whether Secret Service officials should continue to cooperate with the Democrat-led House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, riot – in connection with texts message deleted that day and a agency watchdog's response to the matter.

The director announced his decision in a letter to staffers obtained by CBS News, reportedly after informing agency leadership.

Murray wrote that he would "briefly delay my retirement and transition to the private sector in order to help bridge the gap and foster a smooth and meaningful transition for our future director."

He also wrote in the internal memo: "I feel strongly about using this time to oversee and ensure our agency's continued cooperation, responsiveness, and full support with respect to ongoing Congressional and other inquiries."

Earlier this month, the Jan. 6 committee subpoenaed text messages of two dozen Secret Service agents that were allegedly erased during an agency-wide technology migration, despite from investigators and Congress to preserve the information.

Committee staffer say they have received only one text in response to a July 15 subpoena requesting the from Jan. 5 and Jan. 6, 2021. 

The inspector general for the Department of Homeland Security reportedly told the Secret Service to stop its internal search for the allegedly purged texts sent so it does not "interfere with an ongoing criminal investigation."

The committee also says the Secret Service may have violated the Federal Records Act by failing to properly preserve communications, CBS News also reports.