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June 17, 2024

We’ve just seen that the DOJ refuses to prosecute Merrick Garland on contempt of Congress charges for not turning over the audio of President Biden’s testimony in his “classified documents” case being investigated by Special Counsel Robert Hur.  So it should come as no surprise that they demonstrate essentially no interest in the killing of Little Rock Airport executive Bryan Malinowski in March of this year by federal agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

Seriously, isn’t that just what you expected?  We’re all getting just a little more psychic by the day, aren’t we?

As Texas Sen. Ted Cruz told FOX NEWS’ Maria Bartiromo on Sunday, “This has been the most lawless and partisan attorney general we’ve ever seen.  The number of people on Planet Earth who were surprised when the Biden DOJ said they would not prosecute Merrick Garland’s contempt citation is ZERO.  No person out of the 8 billion people on the planet was surprised, because this DOJ doesn’t care.  Under Merrick Garland, the DOJ exists to do two things: attack the Democrats’ enemies and protect the Democrats’ friends.”

Cruz went to apply this principle specifically to Joe Biden’s enemies and friends, but, given the reputation federal --- and some state --- prosecutors have built, we can’t help but suspect they’re using the same prosecutorial discretion to protect federal agents involved in Bryan Malinowski’s death.  (We also know that the use of deadly force in the similarly unnecessary Mar-A-Lago raid could easily have resulted in someone’s death as well.)  It’s just too soon to close the Malinowski case with such huge unanswered questions left hanging.  The biggest, most perplexing one:  what possible reason could they have had to do it in the first place?

Sadly, there hasn’t been much coverage of the Malinowski story on FOX NEWS or anywhere on the national stage, but THE EPOCH TIMES ran a story on the decision by prosecutors in Pulaski County, Arkansas, to close the investigation by Arkansas State Police.  In a letter dated June 14, Sixth Judicial District Prosecutor Will Jones said the use of deadly force used that day against Malinowski in his West Little Rock home during an armed early-morning federal raid was legal and justified.  (Sarcasm alert…)  Well, of course it was.

Regular readers of the newsletter will be familiar with the details of this shooting, but the links provided here will help fill you in if you haven’t been following.

According to this latest update, “It is unclear why the ATF did not contact Mr. Malinowski at his workplace or during normal waking hours.”  Exactly!  And that is THE key unanswered question, along with multiple violations of policy, that the state police needed to investigate.  They never addressed it.

In his letter, Jones shared a timeline of the home invasion --- yes, that’s exactly what it was --- that came from a Little Rock Police Department mobile recorder.  This in itself doesn’t tell us much we didn’t already know except the very few number of seconds (28) that elapsed between knocking on the door of this large home and breaking it down.  Jones also gave a summary of witness statements, but these witnesses aren’t identified.  He included a brief description of how the exchange of gunfire unfolded and concluded, “A law enforcement officer is justified in using deadly physical force if the officer reasonably believes force is necessary to defend himself or another person from the use of deadly force, according to Arkansas code.”

Yes, that’s true, but, again, why did they create that set of circumstances in the first place?  This is the question we’ve asked from the beginning, and we are no closer to knowing the answer. 

“Prior to entering the residence,” Jones wrote, “the officers identified themselves as police by initiating the lights and siren of a patrol vehicle that was parked in front of the residence.”  They also knocked on the front door, he said.  He also said agents were wearing clothing marked “ATF” or “POLICE” in large letters.  Other accounts we’ve seen prior to this said agents were wearing unmarked clothing.  And Mrs. Malinowski has said she and her husband were sleeping before the ATF broke in; that’s what woke them up.  (NOTE:  Upon arrival at the front door, agents quickly disabled the couple’s RING camera.  We’re still waiting to hear why on earth they did that.)

Bud Cummins, attorney for the Malinowski family --- full disclosure:  he served as my counsel when I was Arkansas governor --- said, “The state’s investigation didn’t attempt to make independent judgments about whether ATF violated the law when they broke down Mr. and Mrs. Malinowski’s front door.  But that question should be a matter of grave concern for the rest of us.”  He pointed out that a search warrant isn’t an automatic license for a home invasion, “especially during an investigation of such a low-level violation with such little risk involved in the search,” and noted that according to the timeline, armed agents waited “a mere 28 seconds” after knocking before breaking down the front door of their 3,000-square-foot home.  Agents are supposed to give a reasonable amount of time for someone to come to the door and let them in before they forcibly enter.

It should be mentioned that the Malinowskis would not have expected a knock on the door at 6AM that they had better jump to answer, because they had no idea they were being investigated.  The ATF had been following them for several months and recently had even put a tracker on their car (!!!), but it was all secret.  For them, this ambush came out of nowhere.  So if they were asleep, would they necessarily have been roused by that knock?  And couldn’t agents have just waited until Bryan came out to the driveway to go to work?  It seems they preferred to set up just the conditions for getting him (and/or his wife) killed.

Also, if the state prosecutor made no judgments on whether the ATF violated the law, who IS supposed to make those judgments?  Since this is a federal bureau, one would think there should be a federal inspector general examining the case.  Is an ATF or “Justice” Department IG looking into it, or how does that work?  One gets the impression the DOJ cares about this about as much as they care about enforcing Merrick Garland’s contempt citation.

In his statement following Jones’ announcement, attorney Cummins said, “The prosecutor based his decision on the right of any law enforcement officer to defend his life with deadly force.  The prosecutor had his duty to perform, and he did it as God showed him the light to see that duty.  But this is far from over.”

He wrote a follow-up letter detailing errors the ATF had made.  One example:  their search warrant affidavit specified he sold 142 guns between 2019 and 2023, when “depending on how you count them,” he said, the number described as sold by Malinowski is really less than a dozen.

Cummins was right to say this isn’t over.  According to the local NBC affiliate,, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, along with the four Arkansas members of Congress, have requested the unredacted case file from the Arkansas State Police along with all investigative material files.  Jordan, we know, will not let this drop.

In an update from a story a couple of months ago --- but before the announcement about dropping the investigation --- KARK confirmed that the agents were not wearing bodycams, in violation of ATF and DOJ policy.  Arkansas Sens. Tom Cotton and John Boozman have called for action after learning of this, saying, “We will continue to press the Department to explain how this violation of its own policy could’ve happened and to disclose the full circumstances of this tragedy.”

According to Cummins, the guns were being sold legally by Malinowski, through the provision known as the “gun show loophole.”  He had been buying and selling guns as a hobbyist without purchasing the $200 professional license.  But surely, he didn’t consider himself to be a professional gun merchant, as he made a very good living running an airport. 

Arkansas State Sen. Mark Johnson explained at a news conference Thursday that law enforcement has “qualified immunity,” meaning they’re not liable in certain circumstances but “if they didn’t follow the rules, they shouldn’t have immunity.”

As reported by KARK, a spokesperson from the ATF shared a statement Friday, and it’s exactly what you’d expect: “As is standard practice, this matter is under review by state and local authorities in Arkansas.  THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE DOES NOT COMMENT ON PENDING MATTERS.”  (Emphasis ours.)

One local news outlet, Jay Grelen’s ARKANSAS MONITEUR on Substack, has been looking in-depth at this case from the start.  Probably anything it’s possible to find out about it has been reported by him.  Here’s his excellent account of this latest update, the announcement of the case being dropped…

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