Charges of retaliation by management officials accounted for about 320 of the 3,900 investigations into alleged misconduct at two Justice Department components over 2014-2018, “with few resulting in discipline,” the GAO has said.
It said that of the reprisals alleged by employees of the U.S. Marshals Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, about three-fourths were submitted through the EEO process. At ATF, none of the 104 claims of management retaliation were upheld, while at the Marshals Service, only one of 110 claims were withheld; the report didn’t specify the outcome of that case.
The remainder were submitted to the department’s IG or other internal investigative offices, involving issues such as whistleblower retaliation. Most of those were closed after the investigation was completed due to insufficient evidence or the findings were only referred to higher management “for informational purposes.” A half-dozen employees retired, and other outcomes included letters of caution or counseling, oral admonishment, and one suspension of 14 days.