Nearly three years ago we reported that the FBI was a hotbed of sexual misconduct, after Inspector General Michael Horowitz uncovered sexual harassment, inappropriate romantic relationships between bosses and subordinates, and outright demands for sex in exchange for promotions.
It seems nothing has changed.
According to an investigation by the Associated Press, the FBI has been subject to at least six sexual misconduct allegations involving senior officials over the past five years, "including two new claims brought this week by women who say they were sexually assaulted by ranking agents."
An assistant FBI director retired after he was accused of drunkenly groping a female subordinate in a stairwell. Another senior FBI official left after he was found to have sexually harassed eight employees. Yet another high-ranking FBI agent retired after he was accused of blackmailing a young employee into sexual encounters.
The AP review of court records, Office of Inspector General reports and interviews with federal law enforcement officials identified at least six allegations against senior officials, including an assistant director and special agents in charge of entire field offices, that ranged from unwanted touching and sexual advances to coercion.
None appears to have been disciplined, but another sexual misconduct allegation identified in the AP review of a rank-and-file agent resulted in him losing his security clearance. -AP
"They’re sweeping it under the rug," said one former FBI analyst with who is suing the agency after claiming that a supervisory special agent 'licked her face and groped her' at a colleague's 2017 farewell party, and has since been diagnosed with post-traumatic distress disorder. Meanwhile, others have accused FBI agents of far worse:
In one of the new lawsuits filed Wednesday, a former FBI employee identified only as “Jane Doe” alleged a special agent in charge in 2016 retired without discipline and opened a law firm even after he “imprisoned, tortured, harassed, blackmailed, stalked and manipulated” her into having several “non-consensual sexual encounters,” including one in which he forced himself on her in a car. The AP is withholding the name and location of the accused special agent to protect the woman’s identity.
"As the premier law enforcement organization that the FBI holds itself out to be, it’s very disheartening when they allow people they know are criminals to retire and pursue careers in law enforcement-related fields," said the former employee, identified only as Becky.
AP notes that their investigation doesn't include the 'growing number of high-level FBI supervisors who have failed to report romantic relationships with subordinates in recent years.'
The last time an inspector general conducted an extensive probe of sexual misconduct within the FBI flagged 343 'offenses' between 2009 - 2012, including three instances of "videotaping undressed women without consent."
Meanwhile, a 17th woman has joined a federal lawsuit alleging systemic sexual harassment at the FBI's Quantico, VA training academy - in which male FBI instructors are said to have made "sexually charged" comments about women who need to "take their birth control to control their moods." Female trainees were also invited to their homes and openly disparaged, according to the filing.
Read the rest of the report here.