The Trump White House is reportedly limiting the scope of the FBI’s investigation into sexual assault allegations leveled against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, according to an NBC News report sourced to a White House official.
These sources claim the FBI has not been permitted to investigate claims made by Julie Swetnick that Kavanaugh engaged in sexually aggressive misconduct while he was a student at Georgetown Preparatory School in the 1980s, and will instead focus on accusations made by Christine Blasey Ford and Deborah Ramirez.
Sources told NBC News that instead of giving the FBI “free reign” to investigate, as Trump claimed on Saturday, the White House counsel’s office has given them a list of witnesses the Bureau is permitted to interview.
Ford testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday that she was “100 percent” sure that Kavanaugh pinned her down and tried to rip her clothes off at a party while the two were in high school in the 1980s. She also named Kavanaugh’s high school classmate, Mark Judge, as a witness and participant to her alleged assault.
Investigators reportedly plan to meet with Mark Judge, according to the report.
Weeks after she was assaulted, Ford told senators she saw Judge at a local Safeway grocery store. In Judge’s memoir, “Wasted,” he wrote that he worked as “a bag boy” in a local supermarket.
NBC News adds:
But as of now, the FBI cannot ask the supermarket that employed Judge for records verifying when he was employed there, one of the sources was told. Ford said in congressional testimony Thursday that those records would help her narrow the time frame of the alleged incident which she recalls happening sometime in the summer of 1982 in Montgomery County, Maryland.
As RawStory notes, the employment records “could help fill-in missing information Blasey Ford’s testimony and show whether the assault happened in July 1, 1982, a night Kavanaugh documented attending a get-together than matches Blasey Ford’s description on his calendar.”
NBC News also reports that the FBI will also not be able to examine why Kavanaugh’s account of his drinking at Yale University differs from those of some former classmates, who have said he was known as a heavy drinker.
Those details may be pertinent to investigating claims from Ramirez who described an alleged incident of sexual misconduct she said occurred while Kavanaugh was inebriated. Ramirez’s lawyer said Saturday that she had been contacted by the FBI and would cooperate.
Julie Swetnick’s lawyer, Michael Avenatti, confirmed Saturday that he has “yet to hear from the FBI.”
Avenatti said he was ready to disclose to the FBI “all information and witnesses in our possession.”
“We continue to request this opportunity as we have been doing for days,” Avenatti continued in a tweet. “My client is telling the truth and deserves to be heard and not shammed.”
He also responded to the NBC News report, writing on Twitter: “If true, this is outrageous. Why are Trump and his cronies in the Senate trying to prevent the American people from learning the truth? Why do they insist on muzzling women with information submitted under penalty of perjury? Why Ramirez but not my client?”
“Trump has now determined that he and he alone will be the sole arbiter of whether a woman’s claims of sexual assault and misogyny are credible. Why even have an FBI investigation? I thought it was their job to make this determination. He and Kavanaugh are afraid of the truth,” he added.