The Pentagon’s investigative watchdog has initiated an inquiry into Navy Rear Adm. Ronny L. Jackson, the White House military physician who withdrew from consideration as President Trump’s nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs amid allegations of improper conduct.
The Defense Department Office of Inspector General, which looks into possible wrongdoing by the Pentagon and its staff, confirmed in a statement Monday that it recently initiated an investigation into Jackson. A spokesman declined to go into detail about the scope or character of the probe.
The investigation marks the latest fallout from Trump’s attempt to elevate his physician to the Cabinet, a move that ended in Jackson’s nomination falling apart.
Not long after Trump nominated Jackson to the Cabinet post, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, Sen. Jon Tester of Montana, released a two-page summary of allegations that had surfaced against the White House physician. Those included accusations that he improperly prescribed drugs, created a hostile work environment and drank while on duty.
The White House said it conducted a thorough review of Jackson’s record and found three minor incidents but no evidence for some of the more extreme allegations in Tester’s document, including one accusing Jackson of wrecking a government vehicle after drinking.
Jackson, who served as White House physician in three administrations, denied wrongdoing.
In early May, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Jackson was no longer serving as the president’s physician but remained on the White House medical staff.
— Paul Sonne
A man suspected in a string of killings in the Phoenix suburb of Scottsdale fatally shot himself as police closed in Monday, ending a days-long manhunt that rattled many in the legal and mental-health communities.
Police on Monday afternoon identified Dwight Lamon Jones, a 56-year-old man who had been arrested for domestic violence in 2009 and had been living in hotels in the nine years since, as the gunman who shot a forensic psychiatrist, a psychologist and two paralegals. Each of those victims was loosely connected to his divorce proceedings, Scottsdale Assistant Chief of Police Richard Slavin said.
Officers with the Scottsdale and Phoenix police departments tracked down the man at an Extended Stay hotel in Scottsdale on Monday morning. Sgt. Vince Lewis, a spokesman for the Phoenix Police Department, said the police found the suspect dead with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
The first victim was a prominent forensic psychiatrist who had consulted in high-profile murder cases, including the 1996 killing of child beauty-pageant star JonBenét Ramsey. Police said Steven Pitt, 59, a clinical associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Arizona College of Medicine in Phoenix, was shot Thursday afternoon outside his office on the outskirts of Scottsdale. As part of the divorce proceedings, Slavin said, Jones had been required to see Pitt.
About 2 p.m. Friday, two women were shot at a law firm in downtown Scottsdale. Veleria Sharp, 48, and Laura Anderson, 49, were paralegals for the family law firm Burt, Feldman, Grenier. Jones’s ex-wife, Connie Jones, had retained Elizabeth Feldman as her divorce lawyer, Slavin said.
The fourth victim — Marshall Levine, 72, a psychologist and counselor — was found dead just after midnight Saturday in his office. Slavin said Jones’s son, as part of the divorce proceedings, was required to see a psychiatrist who occupied the office space that Levine was in.
— Kristine Phillips
George H.W. Bush leaves Maine hospital: Former president George H.W. Bush, 93, left a Maine hospital on Monday after more than a week of treatment for low blood pressure and fatigue. Bush spokesman Jim McGrath said the 41st president is "back to his old self" and looking forward to a summer with family and friends. Bush was admitted to the hospital on May 27.
— Associated Press