Tuesday, May 27, 2003

Return of the 18 minute gap
This seems too silly to be real, and yet...

Texas state Rep. Kevin Bailey, chairman of the House General Investigating Committee, is looking into how the Texas Department of Public Safety conducted its search for the Killer D's. Last week his committee wanted to know whether anyone associated with Tom DeLay's helped direct the search and why DPS officials ordered some records on the issue destroyed on May 14. They were particularly interested in finding out who visited the search command post on May 12. If you've been following this story, you will recall that the DPS command post was set up in the room next to House Speaker Tom Craddick's office. Craddick denies having any knowledge of what went on in that room. Bailey's committee wanted to know who went in and out of the command post, so they requested the security videotapes for the hallway outside the DPS post and Craddick's office.

Bailey's staff then sat down to spend their Memorial Day weekend watching a week's worth of surveillance tapes. When they got to the moment they most wanted, the afternoon of the twelfth, the tape stopped. Everything from 12:47 p.m. to 6 p.m. was missing. "It's odd that it was the day and time that we wanted," Bailey said. "It's fine all week, except for that one period."

The DPS spokesman, channeling for Rosemary Wood, said the gap was caused by a mistake in copying. The original of the tape is still intact and a new--complete--copy of the twelfth was made for the committee on Monday.

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