As President Biden visited Israel on the first leg of his Middle East tour, a Secret Service agent was reportedly first detained and then sent home after physically assaulting a woman outside a bar in Jerusalem.
According to CNN, the incident took place Monday evening and was confirmed by the Secret Service. The employee was “allegedly involved in a physical encounter.”
“The employee was briefly detained and questioned by Israeli police, who released him without charges. The employee has returned to the United States,” the agency said in a statement. They went out of their way to indicate that the alleged assault was not sexual in nature.
Pending investigation of the matter, the employee’s access to Secret Service systems and facilities has been suspended.
Fox confirms that a U.S. Secret Service agency employee working in Israel has returned to the U.S. after being allegedly involved in a physical encounter. The employee was briefly detained and questioned by Israeli police, who released him without charges.
USSS Spox: pic.twitter.com/sjJN0zXKG9
— Pat Ward (@WardDPatrick) July 13, 2022
Details are still unknown concerning how the encounter began or what the issue was. CNN reported that the employee was a member of the Secret Service’s Counter Assault Team but it is unknown if it was a man or a woman.
According to CBS News, a person familiar with the incident said the off-duty agent was leaving dinner with a group of colleagues when there was some sort of collision with a woman on the street. The woman alleged she was struck by the agent and called the police, according to the unnamed source. Police felt compelled to take the agent into custody but later released him after questioning. Investigators are looking into whether the agent was intoxicated at the time of the encounter.
Israeli police and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are declining to comment on the incident.
Biden arrived in Israel on Wednesday, two days after the incident occurred. It is the first stop on a four-day trip to the Middle East for the president. He will travel to the West Bank and then head to Saudi Arabia for a meeting with King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman.
Dignity and class is what the Biden admin is all about.
— Chance The Napper (@JackBurtonsTruc) July 13, 2022
How humiliating, this behavior happned under Obama as well.
— Tabatha (@Tabbyanne1984) July 13, 2022
Excellent representatives of the country, all of them.
— Dave 🌺🇺🇸🏴 (@RetiredMod) July 13, 2022
This is not the first time the Biden administration has been forced to send Secret Service officers back to the U.S. from a foreign trip.
In May, ABC News reported that two employees, an agent and an armed physical security specialist, were booted and sent packing back home after getting into a drunken confrontation with a local cab driver in South Korea. That dust-up allegedly occurred outside the hotel that Biden would later stay at in Seoul.
#BREAKING: NBC News is reporting that we have yet another Secret Service incident as two agents were just sent home from Seoul, South Korea following a drunken incident and argument a few days ago over a taxi outside what is now President Biden's hotel. pic.twitter.com/mlCxtT6Pgy
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) May 20, 2022
The agency also got a black eye earlier this year when four Secret Service members were placed on administrative leave after allegedly accepting gifts, such as a rent-free apartment, from two men who are accused of impersonating federal law enforcement to get close to members of the U.S. government.
(Video Credit: Fox News)
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