Skip to Content

Investigation finds Education Department employee’s office wasn’t vandalized

An incident at an Education Department employee’s office that was initially believed to be vandalism was in fact an act of gravity, an internal investigation by the department found.

A framed poster of Ruby Bridges, a famed American civil rights activist, was found shattered on the employee’s office floor in the initial incident. Other items in the employee’s office were strewn about and damaged. The employee whose office was impacted is African American and works as a diversity change agent at the department.

An internal investigation found that the damage “did not appear to be the result of vandalism,” according to Catherine Grant, public affairs liaison in the Education Department’s office of the Inspector General.

“Rather, the artwork had fallen off the wall, and, when it fell, caused the damage to the items in the office,” Grant told CNN.

The Education Department Inspector General and the Federal Protective Service conducted a joint investigation after the incident was initially reported in August. The Federal Protective Service is part of the Department of Homeland Security and has jurisdiction over federal buildings.

The conclusions of the investigation were shared with staff at a briefing open to all Education Department employees, according to a department official.