WASHINGTON - The Secret Service does not have widespread misconduct, and the agency’s leadership has not “fostered an environment that tolerates inappropriate behavior,” according to a review of the agency’s culture by the Inspector General’s Office for the Department of Homeland Security.
The review began after several Secret Service employees were caught soliciting prostitutes in Cartagena, Colombia, shortly before President Obama arrived there for a summit meeting in April 2012.
Although the agency dismissed many of the employees — including agents and uniformed officers — the incident raised questions about whether there was a long-standing problem of misconduct, and some members of Congress called for the agency to be closely scrutinized.
It is not clear whether the report will satisfy those members of Congress. The acting inspector general for the Department of Homeland Security, Charles K. Edwards, resigned this week amid accusations that he had not stringently investigated the Secret Service’s scandals.
According to the report, roughly 83 percent of the 2,575 agency employees who participated in a survey conducted by the inspector general said they were not aware of other employees who had behaved like the employees who were caught in Cartagena. It also said that 61 percent of those queried said they “believed management does not tolerate misconduct.”
The report said that despite allegations from those dismissed that they had been treated unfairly by the agency’s leadership, its actions “were consistent” with how others were treated in earlier incidents.
New york Times