A top member of President Obama's Secret Service detail under investigation for his conduct during a White House bomb threat probe plans to retire, the Washington Post reports. The decision by Marc Connolly came ahead of the public release of a report concluding that he and a colleague were “more likely than not” impaired by alcohol on the night of March 4 as they drove into a temporary barricade and directly beside a suspicious package that was under investigation as a possible bomb, the investigative report says.
The findings are scheduled to be the subject of a congressional hearing today They prompted Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy to place both men on administrative leave pending decisions on possible disciplinary actions. The investigation found that Connolly, the No. 2 on Obama's detail, and George Ogilvie, a supervisor in the Washington field office, spent five hours at a bar before returning to the White House on the night of March 4. The pair had first attended a work party at which free drinks were available. Later, Ogilvie paid an additional bar tab for 14 alcoholic drinks, mostly Scotch, although Ogilvie could not account for who had consumed most of the beverages. The men both denied drinking to excess. But, in stark terms, the report from the Department of Homeland Security's inspector general faults the agents for poor decisions and cites numerous witnesses who said they believed that one or both of the agents appeared intoxicated.