U.S. Capitol Police Chief resigns...
U.S. Capitol Police Chief Terrance W. Gainer announced his resignation Friday after objections were raised to the hiring of his son-in-law as a police officer.
Gainer, who served for four years as head of the police force in charge of protecting Congress, said his retirement would be effective April 6.
In a statement obtained by The Associated Press, Gainer told his officers: "Together we have brought the department as far as this team should go. ... Next week, I will join my wife and son in Mesa, Arizona, for a few Chicago Cubs games and consider where the future will take the Gainer clan."
Gainer said he did not know he had broken any law when he hired one of his relatives on the police force, but added, "Bottom line - we just learned - is that two of us couldn't be on the job."
Gainer's son-in-law, Darren Ohle, who has been with the Capitol Police for 2 1/2 years, also resigned from his post, Gainer said.
The Capitol Police Board issued a statement saying Gainer's "tenure has been characterized by skillful leadership, always in balance with a keen awareness of the crucial and integral role the Capitol Police play."
The Capitol Police are charged with protecting 535 lawmakers and about 200 square blocks in and around the Capitol. The force came under new stress and scrutiny after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Rep. Juanita Millender-McDonald, D-Calif., ranking member on the House committee that oversees the police force, praised Gainer's tenure.
"I applaud the chief's work in providing a more diverse workforce and his commitment to promoting women and minorities, and he would be sorely missed," Millender-McDonald said in a statement.
But he has also been criticized by District of Columbia officials for not coordinating well with the city government on issues such as traffic restrictions imposed on Capitol Hill.