by WorldTribune Staff, January 31, 2024
Higher ups at the FBI stopped a field agent set to interview a person of interest in the planting of pipe bombs on Jan. 5, 2021 at Republican National Committee and Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C., a report on Monday said.
The person of interest was tied to a particular D.C. Metro fare card and license plate, but the bureau did not allow the agent to interview the individual and then pulled his team off of the lead, The Daily Wire cited Kyle Seraphin, the agent who led the team that was tracking the individual, as saying.
Seraphin said the bomber wasn’t necessarily the same person of interest to whom the car and card were registered to, but that it was a highly specific lead that, if pursued, had a good chance of leading investigators to the suspect. “They found people based on their earlobes that were hanging out by a flagpole,” he said of the FBI’s persistence in pursuing more minor J6 suspects.
Agents had used security footage to follow the person into a Metro station after he planted the bombs, and identified the fare card that was used, Kyle Seraphin, who led the FBI surveillance team which initially investigated the pipe bombs case, told The Daily Wire.
The fare card led the agents to determine that the person got off at a Metro stop in Northern Virginia, where surveillance footage showed the person entering a car. Both the car and the fare card were in the name of the same person — a retired Air Force chief master sergeant who was now working as a contractor with a security clearance, the agents found.
Seraphin and his team were assigned to stake out the person’s row house for days, but the FBI blocked his request to interview the person, he said.
Soon after, the team was pulled off the target completely and told to pore through low-priority leads about minor J6 participants, Seraphin told The Daily Wire.
“Allegedly someone threw bombs around the Capitol which could have killed congressmen or a busload of nuns or anything, and the answer is you can’t follow this guy around — you have to go to headquarters and read ‘leads’ where someone said ‘I might’ve went to high school with some guy that was standing around the Capitol?’ ” Seraphin, who is no longer with the FBI, said.
The FBI could easily have traced the bomber, and, in fact, it is more surprising that he wasn’t traced, Seraphin said.
“They can do telephonic capture and triangulate your phone in real-time… The bureau is far too competent to fail this,” he said. “When they had the World Trade Center bombing in ‘93 they went under four stories of rubble and were able to find a partial VIN number that they used to track it down to the people responsible. And you’re telling me you had a pristine, non-detonated bomb and they couldn’t find anything on it?”
The FBI has released only a couple of grainy pictures of the bomber, despite massive security camera coverage on Capitol Hill. Though the bomber was seen talking on a phone, the FBI has claimed it may not have been able to identify him with cell phone records because a database was corrupted.