* How the FBI Botched the Anthrax Case – former FBI Agent Brad Garrett – 6-30-08
Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 20, 2009
Mr. Garrett wrote (6-30-08) …
- The anthrax investigation, almost from the beginning, was hampered by top-heavy leadership from high ranking, but inexperienced FBI officials, which led to a close-minded focus on just one suspect and amateurish investigative techniques that robbed agents in the field the ability operate successfully.
- I saw it firsthand as one of the FBI agents assigned to the anthrax case and directly involved in the investigation of Dr. Steven Hatfill.
- Last Friday, the U.S. Department of Justice agreed to pay $5,825,000 to Hatfill, whom former Attorney General John Ashcroft once described as “a person of interest.”
- There are many lessons learned from the missteps in the anthrax investigation. (NOTE: these are spelled out in the article; see link below)
Brad Garrett retired from the FBI and is now an ABC News consultant. Garrett holds a PhD and was the hostage negotiation coordinator for the FBI’s Washington Field Office.
LMW COMMENT …
Mr. Garrett wrote this article just after the settlement with Dr. Hatfill, but before Dr. Bruce Ivins committed suicide and was charged by the FBI (in a press conference, not a court of law) as the sole perpetrator.
That sequence of events, as the FBI tumbled and fumbled from Dr. Hatfill to Dr. Ivins, is highly suspicious. This time, they chose someone who was conveniently deceased.
No embarrassing law suits would ever emanate from Dr. Ivins.
I wonder when the leading minds at the FBI and the Department of Justice decided to say they were sure Dr. Ivins was the perpetrator, and who actually made that decision. My guess is that it was after Dr. Ivins committed suicide and was no longer in a position to defend himself.
How else could the FBI have confidently claimed that they had identified the sole perpetrator of the 2001 anthrax mass murder when they had …
- no witnesses who saw Dr. Ivins prepare powdered anthrax, sneak it out of USAMRIID, write and fill the envelopes and drive to Princeton to mail the letters,
- no physical evidence such as spores in Dr. Ivins’ home or car,
- no compelling science; just look at the furious arguments that have emerged since August 2008, still unresolved,
- and an impossible timeframe; Dr. Ivins could not have been in Princeton when the FBI originally said he was; so they just changed their story, leaving the impression that they were making it up as they went along
I have developed a (fictional) scenario to explain the FBI’s inexplicable failure to solve the 2001 anthrax case in my new novel, CASE CLOSED, to be published in June 2009.
you can read Mr. Garrett’s entire story at … http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/story?id=5276220