Quantcast

Homeland Security employee found carrying concealed weapons

A gate leading to the Homeland Security Department headquarters in northwest Washington June 5, 2015. Hackers stole personnel data and Social Security numbers for every federal employee, a government worker union said Thursday, June 11, 2015, charging that the cyberattack on U.S. employee data is far worse than the Obama administration has acknowledged.

SUSAN WALSH/AP

By SPENSER S. HSU | The Washington Post | Published: June 22, 2016

WASHINGTON — U.S. authorities are investigating a Department of Homeland Security program analyst who allegedly entered the agency's Northwest Washington headquarters June 9 with a loaded handgun, a knife, two handheld radio communication devices, an infrared camera, pepper spray and handcuffs, according to court documents.

Jonathan L. Wienke, 45, of Martinsburg, West Virginia, was charged in District of Columbia Superior Court with carrying a pistol without a license on June 10 and released June 13. His attorney, Aminata Ipyana, did not respond to requests for comment.

Special Agent Eric Mann wrote in court filings that Wienke had been selected for a random search at an entry to DHS's facility about 7:30 a.m. June 9. Wienke, who had top-secret clearance and worked in DHS's Office of Intelligence and Analysis, was found to have the items listed in court files in his backpack and the handgun in a pants pocket, the court files show.

As first reported by NBC4 in Washington, on the day after his arrest, U.S. authorities in Martinsburg filed a request for a search warrant for Wienke's home. Mann, of DHS's Internal Security and Investigations Division, wrote that Wienke had a permit to carry a concealed weapon in West Virginia and no criminal history but that based on the items he was carrying, the government had probable cause to investigate whether he and "other individuals, known and unknown," might have been "planning to commit violence against senior DHS officials in the building."

In a statement, DHS spokesman Scott McConnell said that Wienke worked in a non-supervisory role and has been placed on administrative leave.

Wienke was released by D.C. police pending further court proceedings, and the case remains under investigation, said Bill Miller, spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office for the District.

Wienke, an Army veteran and the father of two, "is definitely not a threat," said his mother, Judy Wienke, reached by telephone. "He has nothing to hide. He has never been in any trouble," she said.

The Washington Post's Keith L. Alexander contributed to this report.

from around the web