On April 28th, the FBI raided Homer Inn and Spa in Alaska over suspicions that Marilyn Hueper may have been the one who broke into Nancy Pelosi’s office back on January 6th, and stole her laptop.
The problem being it wasn’t the right woman. Mrs. Hueper just unfortunately looked similar enough from a distance in this high-profile case of mistaken identity.
Today on Capitol Hill FBI Director Wray was questioned by Republican Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio over the methodologies used by his agency with regards to this particular raid. Examples such as the tip that led authorities to launch this operation having come from outside crowdsourcing.
It was during a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee, titled Oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
(According to reports from this past May, it was a pocket copy of the Declaration of Independence.)
Ranking Member Jordan opens up by highlighting how the Huepers had their door kicked in, got handcuffed, held at gunpoint, and interrogated for four hours unnecessarily. On top of that, despite Mrs. Hueper being able to demonstrate herself looking distinctly different from the Pelosi laptop thief suspect, the FBI took the phones and laptops of the couple.
As well as a pocket-sized copy of the Declaration of Independence. Rep. Jordan wanted to know why.
“Well, Congressman, as you know I can’t discuss a specific investigation. I’m not sure whether your characterization is accurate or not,” Director Wray replied.
For the five minutes of questioning Mr. Jordan had, this was the go-to answer for FBI Director Wray. Rep. Jordan asked if Director Wray ever reached out to them personally, and he said he hadn’t.
“Depends on the circumstances” was Wray’s other repeated line to Rep. Jordan as to whether or not federal authorities would hold on to the Hueper’s cell phone data despite giving the couple their devices back. Not wanting to speak on specifics, Director Wray tried clarifying that generally the FBI purges data when it’s no longer needed.
The rare definitive answer was when Rep. Jordan asked if the FBI “crowdsourced” to the public via Twitter when it comes to identifying Antifa members. Wray said yes they do, despite complaints to the contrary given the FBI’s Twitter page activity in comparison to identifying people involved on January 6th.