Philip Haney, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) employee turned whistleblower was found dead on Friday as the result of a single gunshot wound to the chest.
Haney, 66, was found alongside a firearm and his vehicle by officers with the Amador County Sheriff’s Office, who described Haney’s death as a likely suicide in a press release provided to the Washington Examiner.
“On February 21, 2020 at approximately 1012 hours, deputies and detectives responded to the area of Highway 124 and Highway 16 in Plymouth to the report of a male subject on the ground with a gunshot wound,” the Amador County Sheriff’s press release stated.
“Upon their arrival, they located and identified 66-year-old Philip Haney, who was deceased and appeared to have suffered a single, self-inflicted gunshot wound,” the release continued. “A firearm was located next to Haney and his vehicle. This investigation is active and ongoing. No further details will be released at this time.”
Haney had left the DHS and testified in June 2016 that while working for the agency, he received orders to delete hundreds of files of people with connections to Islamic terror groups. Haney assessed that several terror attacks inside the U.S. could have been prevented if those files had not been erased.
The DHS whistleblower aired his allegations against the DHS in a February 2016 op-ed in The Hill. Haney said the order to delete records on Islamic terror came just weeks before a December 2009 attempt to kill 290 passengers traveling aboard a flight from the Netherlands to Detroit, Mich. The suspect, 23-year-old Nigerian Muslim Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab had tried to set off a bomb hidden in his underwear but the triggering device malfunctioned.
Haney criticized then-President Barrack Obama, who he said “threw the intelligence community under the bus,” for failing to “connect the dots” that lead up to the attempted attack.
“Most Americans were unaware of the enormous damage to morale at the Department of Homeland Security, where I worked, his condemnation caused,” Haney wrote. “His words infuriated many of us because we knew his administration had been engaged in a bureaucratic effort to destroy the raw material—the actual intelligence we had collected for years.”
Haney went on to say, “It is very plausible that one or more of the subsequent terror attacks on the homeland could have been prevented if more subject matter experts in the Department of Homeland Security had been allowed to do our jobs back in late 2009.”
Sources close to Haney cast some doubt on the possibility that he committed suicide, as the Amador County Sheriff’s Office assessed. Haney had reportedly discussed rejoining the DHS and was also recently engaged to be married.
Haney had also communicated to the Washington Examiner in November that he planned to write a book, as a sequel his 2016 book, “See Something, Say Nothing: A Homeland Security Officer Exposes the Government’s Submission to Jihad,” which detailed his revelations about the DHS.