Secret Service Director James Murray announced Thursday that he will retire from his post after 27 years with the agency. Photo courtesy U.S. Secret Service
July 7 (UPI) -- Secret Service Director James Murray announced his retirement on Thursday, the agency said in a statement.
Murray will retire on July 30, after serving 27 years with the Secret Service and holding the role of director since May 2019. During his tenure, he saw the agency through the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election, including the Jan. 6, 2021, riots at the U.S. Capitol.
"Jim embodies the meaning of service over self, and protected the families of U.S. presidents like they were part of his own," President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden said in a statement. "We are incredibly grateful for his service to our country and our family."
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas congratulated Murray on his career and hailed him as "an exceptional director of the United States Secret Service."
"Under Director Murray's leadership, the Secret Service has reinforced its stature as the preeminent protective agency in the world and has increased in sophistication and scope its investigative capabilities to meet an increasingly dynamic threat landscape," Mayorkas said.
The Secret Service has come under scrutiny after Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to Mark Meadows, former President Donald Trump's chief of staff, testified before the House Jan. 6 committee that Trump lunged toward Secret Service agent Bobby Engel while attempting to take the wheel of the presidential limo -- known as "the Beast" -- after agents told him he could not go to the Capitol during the riots.
Some Trump allies, not speaking under oath, have questioned Hutchinson's telling of the events but Jan. 6 committee Republican Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois stood by her testimony.
"We certainly would say that Cassidy Hutchinson has testified under oath, we find her credible and anybody that wants to cast disparagements ... that was firsthand present should come and also testify under oath, and not through 'anonymous sources," Kinzinger said on Sunday.