The U.S. Secret Service on Tuesday arrested a National Security Council contractor who was wanted in Maryland for attempted first-degree murder.
Martese Maurice Edwards was detained when he showed up for work at the White House on Tuesday morning, a day after Secret Service says it was notified through the Criminal Justice Information System about a warrant for Edwards’ arrest.
CBS News reported the warrant was filed by the Prince George’s County sheriff’s department on May 17. It is unclear why federal officials were not notified about the warrant until more than two weeks later. And according to Bradley Moss, an attorney who frequently represents individuals being vetted for clearances, existing clearance-holders are required to report items like a pending arrest warrant.
“If they don’t self-report, however, the next line of defense is the [national instant criminal background check] system, which agencies routinely check,” Moss told The Daily Beast. “That system is dependent upon state and local law enforcement officials to timely insert new and updated information. That human element to the process is subject to flaws, just as we saw here.”
According to NBC News, Edwards worked in the Old Executive Office Building, which is adjacent to the White House and inside the same complex. His official duties as a contractor for the NSC were not immediately clear. The NSC referred questions about him to the Secret Service, which didn't return requests for comment Tuesday night.
A LinkedIn profile bearing the same name says Edwards worked as an executive assistant and office manager at the Department of Defense, and as a police officer for the Defense Intelligence Agency.
This is a developing story. Adam Rawnsley and Lisa Schwartz contributed reporting.