Man Charged With Storming the Capitol Formerly Worked for the FBI and Held Top Secret Clearance

Illustration for article titled Man Charged With Storming the Capitol Formerly Worked for the FBI and Held Top Secret Clearance
Photo: Brent Stirton (Getty Images)

The more information that comes out about the Capitol riot, the clearer it becomes that it was attended by a lot of folks who really had no business being there. I mean no one had any business rioting at the Capitol, but a former FBI employee who held top secret security clearance really should’ve known better than to allegedly attempt insurrection.

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The Associated Press reports that Thomas Caldwell is a Navy vet who worked as a section chief for the FBI from 2009 to 2010. Caldwell is one of three people who authorities allege to be a leader of the extremist group, the Oath Keepers. Caldwell has been charged with conspiracy and authorities believe he played a role in plotting the raid in advance.

From the Associated Press:

The defense said Caldwell, who has denied being part of the Oath Keepers, has held a top-secret security clearance since 1979, which required multiple special background investigations, according to Plofchan. Caldwell also ran a consulting firm that did classified work for the U.S. government, the lawyer said.

“He has been vetted and found numerous times as a person worthy of the trust and confidence of the United States government, as indicated by granting him Top Secret clearances,” Plofchan wrote.

Most section chiefs within the FBI rise through the ranks of the bureau and it is unclear whether Caldwell would’ve been directly hired for that position or whether he held any other positions with the bureau. The FBI did not immediately comment Monday evening and Caldwell’s lawyer didn’t immediately answer questions about his client’s work.

Caldwell was arrested on Jan.19 and has been under house arrest since. His attorneys claim that Caldwell couldn’t have participated in the riot as he is “100% disabled veteran” that has back, shoulder, and knee problems related to a “service-connected injury.”

I love how they keep pushing the vet narrative. “Sure, he allegedly attempted treason, but remember that one time he served his country?”

Charging documents include messages that were allegedly sent to Caldwell before and during the riot. While Caldwell’s attorneys say he didn’t participate in the riot, the messages reveal he certainly—excuse me—allegedly played a role in coordinating it. Facebook messages show that Caldwell discussed booking hotel rooms near the Capitol with other Oath Keepers. One of the messages sent to Caldwell said: “Will probably call you tomorrow … mainly because … I like to know wtf plan is. You are the man COMMANDER.”

The messages didn’t end there either. During the riot, Caldwell received multiple messages about the location of legislators. One message said “all members are in the tunnels under the capital,” according to court documents, AP notes. “Seal them in turn on gas,” it said. Other messages include “Tom all legislators are down in the Tunnels 3floors down” and “go through back house chamber doors facing N left down hallway down steps.”

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Y’all, they called this man out by name while committing a federal crime. The most crime I’ve ever committed was illegally downloading Tha Carter III in high school, but even I know that you don’t use names while breaking the law. They never saw Reservoir Dogs?

Caldwell is one of about 200 people who have been charged in relation to the riot at the Capitol on Jan. 6. Officials have said that a special group of prosecutors have been tasked with determining if sedition charges should be brought forth.

The stylin', profilin', limousine riding, jet flying, wheelin' and dealin' nerd of The Root.

DISCUSSION

Dr Emilio Lizardo

I don’t understand the reasoning “he served in the armed forces. He would never do anything like this!”

In the history of mankind, every single military coup ever has, by definition, been conducted by a current or former member of that country’s armed forces. This goes back AT LEAST to Julius Ceaser crossing the Rubicon and probably farther.