U.S. Capitol Police Chief Terrance Gainer has resigned, saying he felt that “it was time to move along” from one of the nation’s most high-profile law enforcement jobs since the 2001 terrorist attacks, reports the Washington Post. The sudden resignation of Gainer, who has headed the force since 2002, came on the day questions of nepotism prompted a son-in-law to leave the force. Gainer said he and Darren Ohle had not known about the restrictions on hiring relatives when Ohle became an officer in 2003. There was never any attempt to conceal their ties, he said.
Colleagues said Gainer, 58, has grown frustrated over clashes with members of Congress and top congressional staff members concerning security, administration, and the handling of high-profile events. Gainer has been looking for work in other law enforcement agencies and at nonprofit groups for several months. Gainer oversaw the growth of the force by 400 members, to 1,700 officers, and is generally credited with boosting morale among the rank and file. “The Capitol is one of the most sensitive sites in the country, and they have probably lost one of the best homeland security experts in the country,” said D.C. Police Chief Charles Ramsey, Gainer’s previous boss. Still, his force was faulted for ejecting a protester and a congressman’s wife from the House gallery the night of the State of the Union address Jan. 31. The congressman’s wife later called Gainer “an idiot.” Gainer apologized for his officers’ actions.