The Tom Wales Case Is Still Open

By James Fallows
wales1.jpg

Over the years I've mentioned several times the heartbreaking murder case of Tom Wales. That's him at right. He was a career federal prosecutor in Seattle, who at age 49 was shot dead in his home, by a rifleman through a window, as he worked at his computer at night. I knew him slightly; his brother-in-law is one of my closest friends but doesn't know I'm posting this.

Tom Wales was killed on October 11, 2001 -- nearly ten years ago. If the national media had not been all-consumed with the 9/11 attacks and their aftermath, this would have been a much bigger national story. From the start police assumed that he was shot because of one of the cases he was pursuing. He is thought to be the first federal prosecutor ever killed in the line of duty. For previous items on the case, see here, here, and here. Jeffrey Toobin did a very good article about Wales, the killing, and the still-inconclusive investigation in the New Yorker


Yesterday in Seattle, Attorney General Eric Holder declared that he considered the case still open and requested public help in developing new leads. There is a $1,000,000 reward for information that helps the FBI. Good for Holder, the Justice Department, and the FBI, in sticking up for one of their own. More from the FBI and from the Thomas C. Wales Foundation.

This week Tom Wales's children, Amy and Tom, released an online appeal for information and help. Please watch.


Thanks to BW in Washington state.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2011/09/the-tom-wales-case-is-still-open/245898/