Tuesday, April 20, 2010

U.S. Secret Service -- Letter 8/18/97

August 18, 1997
3801 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20008-4530

Philip C. Leadroot, S.A.
U.S. Secret Service
Washington, DC 20036

Dear Mr. Leadroot:

This will elaborate the letter dated August 18, 1997 addressed to Treasury Department General Counsel, Edward S. Knight, a courtesy copy of which I forwarded to you.

At the time of my employment at the law firm of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, Edward S. Knight was a partner at the firm. Mr. Knight, therefore, may be able to elaborate the concerns of my coworkers (including my direct supervisor, Christine Robertson) and Akin Gump managers relating to my reported risk of violence (including homicide), and may be able to offer specific facts relating to the decision of senior firm managers at the time of my termination that I posed a homicide risk and that the firm needed to secure its premises against an armed assault that, it was feared, I might commit.

Mr. Knight is mentioned in sworn pleadings I filed with the D.C. Department of Human Rights in January 1993 in connection with that agency's investigation of my job termination: "Complainant's Reply to Respondent's Response to Interrogatories and Document Request," at page 240, Freedman v. Akin, Gump, Hauer & Feld, agency no. 92-087-P(N).

Mr. Knight was a partner in the firm's legislative section; that is, he was a congressional lobbyist.

The pleading refers to a legislative seminar for the firm's legal assistants, arranged by Akin Gump legal assistant administrator Maggie Sinnott. The seminar featured Mr. Knight. I recall that during a question and answer session that followed Mr. Knight's presentation, I asked the following question of him: "Do you think that it's possible that the success of Akin Gump's legislative section is attributable to the 'sex appeal' of a name like Robert Strauss, and that after Mr. Strauss is gone, the firm's legislative section will not be as successful?" Mr. Knight responded that the success of the firm's legislative section was based on the skill of its lawyers, and not the "sex appeal" of any one person. He specifically pointed to the abilities and competence of a fellow partner, Joel Jankowski, and said that even without Mr. Strauss, the firm's legislative practice would be highly successful with legal talent like that of Mr. Jankowski. Incidentally, I believe Mr. Jankowski is a member of the firm's seven-member executive committee, which also includes Malcolm Lassman and R. Bruce MacLean (to whom my direct supervisor, Christine Robertson reported).

I do not know what communications, if any, Treasury Department General Counsel Edward S. Knight has had with his former partners at Akin Gump upon assuming his position at Treasury.


Gary Freedman

cc: Hon. Arlen Specter

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