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FOIA News: The TSA Releases Data on Air Marshal Misconduct, 7 Years After We Asked

FOIA News (2015-16)Kevin SchmidtComment

The TSA Releases Data on Air Marshal Misconduct, 7 Years After We Asked

By Michael Grabell, Pro Publica, Feb. 24, 2016

Seven and a half years ago, as a new reporter here, I filed a Freedom of Information Act request for all reports of misconduct by federal air marshals.

It had been several years since the U.S. government rapidly expanded its force of undercover agents trained to intervene in hijackings after 9/11. And a source within the agency told me that a number of air marshals had recently been arrested or gotten in trouble for hiring prostitutes on missions overseas.

I knew the FOIA request would take a while — perhaps a few months — but I figured I’d have the records in time for my first ProPublica project.

Instead, I heard nothing but crickets from the Transportation Security Administration.

Finally, last Wednesday, an email popped into my inbox with the data I had been fighting for since my fourth day at ProPublica.

Read more here.