CNN

Secret Service concludes cocaine investigation, no suspect identified

Jul 13, 2023, 11:00 AM

A view of the White House on July 4, 2023....

A view of the White House on July 4, 2023. (Julia Nikhinson/Reuters)

(Julia Nikhinson/Reuters)

(CNN) — The Secret Service has concluded its investigation into the small bag of cocaine found at the White House and has been unable to identify a suspect, according to a statement from the US Secret Service.

Secret Service officials combed through “security systems” and indexed “several hundred individuals” who entered the West Wing in the days preceding the discovery and were unable to identify a suspect, according to the USSS statement. The Secret Service said FBI lab results from the packaging found “insufficient DNA” and could not retrieve any fingerprints.

“Therefore, the Secret Service is not able to compare evidence against the known pool of individuals,” a statement from the USSS said.

Investigators were also unable to identify the particular moment or day when the baggie was left inside the West Wing cubby near the lower level entrance where it was discovered.

“There was no surveillance video footage found that provided investigative leads or any other means for investigators to identify who may have deposited the found substance in this area,” the agency’s statement said. “Without physical evidence, the investigation will not be able to single out a person of interest from the hundreds of individuals who passed through the vestibule where the cocaine was discovered. At this time, the Secret Service’s investigation is closed due to a lack of physical evidence.”

A source familiar with the investigation told CNN that the leading theory remains that it was left by one of the hundreds of visitors who entered the West Wing that weekend for tours and were asked to leave their phones inside those cubbies.

The cubbies where the small bag of cocaine was found is a blind spot for surveillance cameras, according to a source familiar with the investigation. While there’s surveillance around where the bag was found, cameras are not trained directly on the West Wing cubbies near the lower-level entrance where it was discovered, the source said, making it difficult to identify who left the bag behind.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

CNN previously reported that cocaine was found in a cubby near the ground floor entrance to the West Wing where staff-led tours of the White House pass through on their way into the building.

Visitors entering the West Wing for tours are asked to leave their phones in those cubbies, which can also be used by staff who cannot bring their phones into a SCIF, or sensitive compartmented information facility, where classified materials are handled. The cubbies are located near the Situation Room, which has not been used for months due to ongoing renovations.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre expressed confidence last week that Secret Service will “get to the bottom” of the incident.

The discovery of a powdery substance by Secret Service personnel conducting routine rounds of the building had prompted a brief evacuation as part of what the Secret Service described as “precautionary closures.”

The Secret Service briefed the House Oversight and Accountability Committee on the case Thursday morning. Leaving that briefing, GOP Rep. Tim Burchett told CNN the case was “the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen in my life.”

He said that the bag contained less than a gram of cocaine.

“Y’all have all been to the White House. You give your Social Security number, you get, I mean, I’m sure they have facial identification and everything else, and to say that they don’t know who it is, to me, somebody should lose their job over this, a lot of people,” he said.

He added, “Somebody walks in the White House, the most secure building in the United States of America – in the world, actually – and can place something in a locker. What if it was a biological entity? What if it was something that had an emergent that would, you know, would mature over a few days and it could – you know, it’s just a lot of questions.”

GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene told reporters that the Secret Service informed members in their briefing that it had narrowed its list of suspects down to 500 people. Greene, who said part of the briefing was classified, said she asked Secret Service if they would drug test those individuals and she said their answer was no.

The list includes a mixture of staffers and others on a tour, according to GOP Rep. Lauren Boebert, but the Secret Service would not provide specifics.

Boebert said the cocaine was found in locker number 50 and the key to that locker is missing. A number of members raised issues with the locker system and how it needs to be more secure.

Republican Rep. Nancy Mace said the Secret Service had to get visitor logs and other information from the Biden administration through the Presidential Records Act because the locker where the cocaine was found is under the jurisdiction of the Biden administration.

This story has been updated with additional information.

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

CNN

Usher performing at the 2023 iHeartRadio Living Black Block Party in Los Angeles. (Kevin Winter/Get...

Alli Rosenbloom, CNN

Usher will headline the 2024 Super Bowl halftime show

Grammy-winning artist Usher is saying “Yeah!” to headlining the Super Bowl LVIII halftime show.

3 days ago

Shelves of bottled water were far from full Friday at Fremin's Food Market in Port Sulphur, Louisia...

Jamiel Lynch and Rachel Ramirez, CNN

An October saltwater intrusion could threaten drinking water in New Orleans, so they’ll barge in 36 million gallons of fresh water a day

The US Army Corps is planning to barge 36 million gallons of fresh water daily into the lower Mississippi River near New Orleans.

3 days ago

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish men and children gather in the coastal city of Netanya on September 21, to pe...

Sofia Barrett, CNN

Yom Kippur is the holiest day of the year in Judaism. Here’s what that means

Yom Kippur, or the Day of Atonement, is considered the holiest day of the year for people who practice Judaism.

3 days ago

Senator Bernie Sanders addresses the audience during a rally in support of striking United Auto Wor...

Eva Rothenberg, CNN

Contract negotiations: UAW strike puts the four-day workweek back in focus

Originally Published: 17 SEP 23 17:02 ET (CNN) — When the United Auto Workers called a strike last week against General Motors, Ford and Stellantis, one of their demands focused on an idea circulating on the periphery of labor reform circles. In addition to calling for a 36% pay raise and increased job security, union […]

10 days ago

After Drew Barrymore initially announced plans to resume production of her daytime talk show, the W...

Alli Rosenbloom and Lisa Respers France, CNN

Drew Barrymore and ‘The Talk’ pause show returns as writers and actors remain on strike

Drew Barrymore announced that she will pause the premiere of her talk show

10 days ago

Generac has recalled about 64,000 of its portable generators after reports of overheating resulting...

Michelle Watson, CNN

Generac recalls around 64,000 portable generators amid hurricane season

As hurricane season continues to knock out power supplies Generac Power Systems says its recalling thousands of portable generators.

10 days ago

Sponsored Articles

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Human hand holding a protest banner stop vaping message over a crowded street background....

Prosperous Utah Communities

Utah’s Battle to Protect Youth from Vaping Epidemic Faces New Threat as Proposed Rule Threatens Progress

Utah's strict standards of nicotine levels in vaping products are at risk, increasing health hazards associated with use. Read more about how you can advocate for a better future for Utah's youth.

Aerial photo of Bear Lake shoreline with canopies and people camped out on the beach...

Visit Bear Lake

Last-Minute Summer Vacation Planning? Check Out Bear Lake!

Bear Lake is the perfect getaway if you are last-minute summer vacation planning. Enjoy activities with your whole family at this iconic lake.

close up of rose marvel saliva blooms in purple...

Shannon Cavalero

Drought Tolerant Perennials for Utah

The best drought tolerant plants for Utah can handle high elevations, alkaline soils, excessive exposure to wind, and use of secondary water.

Secret Service concludes cocaine investigation, no suspect identified