(This is Part 1 of a three-part series on revelations in the Carey case made by a Secret Service officer.)
WASHINGTON – It’s one thing for a Secret Service officer to anonymously tell the media his agency is engaged in a cover-up over a deadly shooting.
It’s quite another to go on the record publicly, allow his name to be used, and to say his some of his colleagues should be prosecuted for the killing of an unarmed woman.
Muhammad Abdul Raheem, an officer in the Uniformed Division of the U.S. Secret Service for 11 years, decided to go public and reveal his identity because he felt the killing of Miriam Carey by federal officers on Oct. 3, 2013 was unjust.
As an anonymous source, the Trenton, New Jersey, native previously told WND, in October:
- “Everybody knew it was a cover-up.”
- “Secret Service policy had been so obviously violated.”
- “They all knew it was unlawful to pursue Carey because no felony had been committed.”
- “Lying is so prevalent, they don’t even have to tell people to lie. People are so programmed, they don’t have to be told to lie. It’s done out of fear.”
- Secret Service officers initially thought “someone was going to jail over it because it was such an obvious bad shooting.”
For the record, Raheem now adds: “Whoever fired the rounds that took her life unjustly, they should be charged. The superiors who tried to cover it up, or were involved, them as well.”
He also made a remark that would appear to strongly indicate the official cover-up began well before the official investigation into the death of the unarmed, suburban mother who was shot in the back and killed by Secret Service and Capitol Police officers.
Carey was chased and shot to death after doing little more than making a U-turn into a White House guard post, apparently by mistake, because all she did after that was immediately try to leave.
The stunning facts and details of the investigation and the Justice Department cover-up are revealed in WND Books’ “Capitol Crime: Washington’s Cover-Up of the Killing of Miriam Carey,” released in September.
Raheem recently sat down with WND and a reporter from the Washington Post and discussed the Carey case for three-and-a-half-hours in a Washington, D.C., office building just a few blocks from the site of another infamous capital cover-up, the Watergate Hotel.
Raheem verified his identity by presenting his official credentials from the U.S. Secret Service.
The Secret Service officer was accompanied by Carey family attorney Eric Sanders, himself a former NYPD officer, who suggested Raheem was taking a significant risk because, “It’s a big deal to talk about this stuff.”
“In law enforcement jobs,” the attorney added, “they almost force you to become part of the culture, and if you go against them, they give you the guillotine.”
In fact, Raheem has been on administrative leave since June 2015, while the Secret Service sorts out an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or EEOC, claim he filed against the agency for what he considers harassment.
Sanders believes the agency’s actions in putting Raheem on leave and Raheem’s views on the Carey killing are not unrelated, after the officer quietly shared his criticism of the shooting with colleagues.
“Remember, it (the EEOC claim) was only a couple months after the Carey incident,” Sanders told WND. “I’m saying they’re connected because, as much as you think you’re quiet about how you feel about things, everyone talks. It was only a couple of months after he said the shooting wasn’t justified.”
“Then all of these other things started to happen. That’s retaliation.”
Raheem said he agreed, “definitely.”
The Secret Service officer previously told WND in detail all the reasons, anonymously, that he believed there was a cover-up in the killing of Carey.
But it was something on the record that he said casually, almost in passing, that may be stunning evidence of just that.
Raheem described how the chief of the entire Secret Service Uniformed Division, Kevin S. Simpson, called a special meeting within a week of the Carey shooting to address the incident.
Raheem said the purpose of the joint roll call was to inform the entire department that it was a “good shoot. And that the Department of Justice was going to say so.”
It is particularly striking that the chief would announce that the Justice Department had already decided the shooting was justifiable.
That’s because the Justice Department was responsible for the investigation into the shooting.
And the months-long investigation had barely even begun, if at all.
That announcement would appear to indicate the Justice Department had already decided its conclusion before the investigation was even conducted.
And that would appear to strongly confirm Raheem’s allegation that there was a cover-up in the Carey killing.
And that the cover-up was conducted because the shooting was, in fact, not justifiable.
Because the officers involved in the shooting were members of the U.S. Capitol Police and the uniformed division of the Secret Service, the investigation was done by the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department, or MPD.
Its report was to be reviewed by the office of the U.S. Attorney for Washington, D.C., a branch of the Justice Department, or DOJ.
It was, in fact, the Justice Department that announced on July 10, 2014, the investigation had revealed no wrongdoing by the officers who shot and killed Carey and that no charges would be filed against them.
The DOJ said there was insufficient evidence to charge the officers, then took the unusual and extraordinary step of refusing to release the police report that would have confirmed or contradicted its finding.
So WND successfully sued the DOJ and obtained the report, which contained serious discrepancies between what witnesses reported and the official version of events.
In fact, the police report contained significant evidence, as WND has extensively documented, that indicates the killing of Carey was unjust and that federal officials covered up that fact.
Raheem’s offhand observation appears to have provided stunning confirmation of WND’s investigative findings.
WND asked the Secret Service officer if his superiors, during the joint roll-call meeting, explained anything about the Carey shooting to justify it.
“No,” he replied, “they just said watch the videos. Watch the videos of what happened at the Capitol. They said that after watching that, they knew it was a good shoot.”
There is video of Carey at the White House guard post. And there are two videos of the Carey shooting, because officers shot at her in two locations. Pursuing officers initially confronted Carey at Garfield Circle, just below the U.S. Capitol, and shot at her from the back as she left. The second shooting scene was on Constitution Avenue, just a block from the Supreme Court, where an officer shot Carey in the back and side of the head, just below the ear, killing her.
The video of the nonfatal shooting of Carey at Garfield Circle was taken by a passing news crew, and it has been publicly available on YouTube since the day of the shooting, more than three years ago.
The video of the killing of Carey on Constitution Avenue was taken by a security camera and has not been released to the public.
The DOJ has still refused to release that video to WND, even though it told a federal judge it would release all relevant evidence in the Carey case.
WND has seen stills of that video.
WND asked Raheem if they had let him and his fellow officers see that video.
“No, they didn’t,” he replied. “I’ve seen the videos that everybody else has seen. I haven’t seen anything more.”
There may be good reason for that.
Raheem said nothing he saw in the Garfield video would have justified officers shooting and killing Carey.
From what WND has seen of the still photos from the fatal shooting of Carey on Constitution Avenue, the evidence does not appear to support the official version of events.
Police claimed they shot and killed Carey in self-defense, because she was allegedly driving at them.
However, Carey was clearly driving away from police at Garfield, as evidenced by the fact they shot at her from the back.
Additionally, the evidence from the shooting on Constitution Avenue does not appear to support the officers’ claim of firing in self-defense.
As WND previously disclosed, not one of the five witnesses in the official police report said Carey’s car was driving toward an officer on Constitution Avenue.
The stills from the video shot on Constitution Avenue appear to confirm that.
The following is the official version of events, and the shooting on Constitution, in the statement issued by the Justice Department on July 10, 2014:
“After ignoring multiple commands given by officers who were running towards her vehicle with guns drawn, Ms. Carey revved her engine and then reversed her vehicle and drove directly at a U.S. Capitol Police officer who was approaching Ms. Carey’s vehicle from behind. As the U.S. Capitol Police officer ran towards the median to avoid being struck by Ms. Carey’s vehicle, he and another officer from the U.S. Secret Service (who also had fired shots at the Garfield Circle location) started firing. The two officers fired nine rounds each. Twenty seconds after Ms. Carey had arrived at the 2nd and Maryland location, her vehicle crashed into the kiosk and came to rest. Ms. Carey was unconscious at this time, and did not get out of the vehicle. No additional rounds were fired by officers after the crash.”
Here is a sequence of still photographs at that scene, provided by the Justice Department.
The first one shows Carey crossing the median after the raised barriers in front of her had blocked her path:
Carey’s path is then blocked by a squad car:
Officers appear in front and back of Carey’s car with guns drawn, possibly firing. Their positions would be consistent with bullet holes in Carey’s car:
Carey shifts into reverse, but the officer behind her appears to easily move out of her way:
The officer who was behind her is now to her side, safely out of harm’s way, but apparently fires toward her head, anyway. He is in position to deliver a shot consistent with what the autopsy described as the mortal wound:
Neither officer appears to be in danger.
But, still, they shot and killed Carey.
The Capitol Police policy on use of force even makes a special point of informing officers that they must not shoot if the suspect poses no threat:
“NOTE: The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Tennessee v. Garner states that the use of deadly force to prevent the escape of all felony suspects, whatever the circumstances, is constitutionally unreasonable. Officers cannot shoot a fleeing felon who poses no threat to the safety of the officer(s) or others.”
As a veteran of the force of more than 11 years, Raheem is well versed in Secret Service policy on the use of force. He said, from what he has seen and heard, the killing of Carey was in violation of official policy.
He was not on duty the day of the Carey killing, but he has viewed the evidence his fellow officers have seen, and discussed the case in confidence with his colleagues.
Raheem is very familiar with the White House guard post at 15th and E streets, where the incident began.
He was not stationed there at the time, but he told WND, “I’ve worked there before. That was my main location. Everybody has worked 15th and E. That’s where they put you as soon as you start. Everybody in the Secret Service Uniformed Division has worked 15th and E.”
Raheem said that’s where they used to put the least-experienced officers, but, because of incidents that have occurred there, it has become a post for more-experienced officers. He also said the officers working the post at the time of the Carey incident were experienced.
Raheem did not fault any of the on-duty officers at 15th and E for their actions that day.
However, an off-duty Secret Service agent, for some unexplained reason, did try to prevent Carey from leaving by dragging a bicycle rack in front of her car, which she drove around before she departed.
Trying to leave the White House grounds is not illegal. Yet, for reasons never explained by officials, Secret Service and Capitol Police officers chased Carey, shot her five times from the back and killed her.
The media reported she rammed a security gate, ran over a police officer and fled at high speed. None of that turned out to be true.
The official justification, still to this day, is that federal officers shot the woman in the back and killed her – in self-defense.
But, even long before WND uncovered many of the details suggesting otherwise, once he heard the basic facts of the case in December of 2013, famed civil libertarian Nat Hentoff said from all of the evidence he had seen in WND’s reports, which he called very thorough and easily corroborated, “[T]his is a classic case of police out of control and, therefore, guilty of plain murder.”