U.S. Congressman charged with shocking crime you’ll never believe

Plenty of politicians are mixed up in crime. But no one is ever this obvious with it.

And this U.S. Congressman was charged with a shocking crime you’ll never believe.

Authorities reported on Wednesday that Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) was accused with pulling a fire alarm in a House office building ahead of a government spending vote last month.

According to court filings, D.C. Attorney General Brian Schwalb charged Bowman with one misdemeanor count of falsely pulling a fire alarm on September 30. Bowman has been ordered to report to the headquarters of the United States Capitol Police (USCP) on Thursday to be booked, fingerprinted, photographed, and processed. At 9:30 a.m., he is scheduled to appear in D.C. Superior Court.

NBC News reported that the charge brings a possible jail sentence of six months. However, the D.C. Attorney General’s Office said Bowman “is pleading guilty and has agreed to pay the maximum fine,” which is $1,000. Bowman will also admit his mistake and apologize to the Capitol Police.

According to CNN, if Bowman follows the terms of the agreement, which includes three months of probation, the case would be dropped.

The Capitol Police launched an investigation after the fire alarm’s alert caused the Cannon House Office Building to be evacuated. The investigation resulted in a criminal referral to the District of Columbia prosecutor.

“We finished our investigation. Our agents gathered all the evidence, packaged it up, and sent the entire case with charges to prosecutors for their consideration,” the Capitol Police told The Daily Wire.

Bowman said in a statement on Wednesday that he wants to move on from the incident.

“I’m thankful for the quick resolution from the District of Columbia Attorney General’s office on this issue and grateful that the United States Capitol Police General Counsel’s office agreed I did not obstruct nor intend to obstruct any House vote or proceedings. I am responsible for activating a fire alarm, I will be paying the fine issued, and look forward to these charges being ultimately dropped,” Bowman said.

“I think we all know that Republicans will attempt to use this to distract everyone from their mess,” Bowman added, “but I look forward to putting this behind me and to continue working hard to deliver for New Yorkers.”

An affidavit in support of an arrest warrant included a description of what happened by U.S. Capitol Police Supervisory Special Agent Joseph McAtee, including details about searching for a suspect, details about his interview with Bowman, and a review of security camera footage that showed the defendant jogging past Capitol Police officers without saying anything to them after pulling the fire alarm.

After noting that there was no fire, the affidavit stated, “Therefore, based upon the evidence, this affiant has probable cause to believe that the defendant willfully or knowingly gave a false fire alarm within the District of Columbia, in violation” of D.C. code.

Bowman apologized for sounding the fire alarm so quickly after the event, which occurred on September 30, a Saturday.

“Today, as I was rushing to make a vote, I came to a door that is usually open for votes but today would not open. I am embarrassed to admit that I activated the fire alarm, mistakenly thinking it would open the door. I regret this and sincerely apologize for any confusion this caused,” Bowman said at the time.

Bowman also disputed in his statement that pulling the fire alarm was a delay tactic in a budget battle that ultimately resulted in Washington averting a government shutdown with a 45-day continuing resolution.

“I want to be very clear, this was not me, in any way, trying to delay any vote,” the congressman said.

“It was the exact opposite – I was trying urgently to get to a vote, which I ultimately did and joined my colleagues in a bipartisan effort to keep our government open. I also met after the vote with the Sergeant at Arms and the Capitol Police, at their request, and explained what had happened. My hope is that no one will make more of this than it was. I am working hard every day, including today, to do my job, to do it well, and deliver for my constituents.”

Bowman experienced backlash following the incident, including a Republican attempt to oust him from Congress and analogies to the January 6, 2021 Capitol breach. In a reaction to a Capitol Hill journalist who explained why Bowman’s argument made “no sense” to him, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) defended Bowman.

“Fwiw, Cannon construction reroutes have made the tunnel walks from Cannon to the Capitol much longer than going outside. Entire tunnels are closed & some offices near construction have disorienting routes. The NJ/Ind exit (which this looks like) is the easiest & it’s usually open,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a post to X.

Bowman’s office also released a memo to the offices of other Democrats with multiple suggested talking points regarding the fire alarm incident, including: “Republicans need to instead focus their energy on the Nazi members of their party before anything else.” The congressman later blamed his staff for the memo, saying he “condemn[s] the use of the term Nazi out of its precise definition.”

On Wednesday, House Administration Chairman Bryan Steil (R-WI) issued a statement disputing Bowman’s version of what happened on September 30.

“Rep. Bowman’s excuse does not pass the sniff test. After pulling the fire alarm, Rep. Bowman fled the scene, passed by multiple Capitol Police officers and had every opportunity to alert USCP of his mistake,” Steil said. “I want to thank U.S. Capitol Police for their swift attention to this incident, and encourage the Ethics Committee to further pursue this matter.”

The complaint against Bowman was made public just hours after the Republican-led House elected Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA) as its new speaker.

Stay tuned to the DC Daily Journal.

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