Security Clearance Denial

Embellished Excuses for Self-Inflicted Wounds Land Clearance Holder in Hot Water

Every once in a while, I run across a security clearance appeals case
where I ask myself did this really happen? There are some people out
there with mental disorders that impact their ability to think
straight when under stress, causing bizarre or abnormal behavior. I
found a recent Department of Energy security clearance appeals case in
which the contractor fabricated a bunch of stories to explain why he
had missed out on scheduled afternoon negotiations, and was later found
bloodied and disorientated. Here are the highlights:

The contractor’s coworkers became concerned when he missed an
afternoon session of negotiations at an off-site and was not answering
his phone. They notified the contractor’s manager and supervisor, who
also could not make contact. Eventually, the contractor called the
manager back and told him he had been working out at the hotel and was
fine. He also told the supervisor he had attended the afternoon
session, even though he had not. He then contacted a coworker to
arrange retrieving his belongings that were left at the off-site when
he did not return. After several back-and-forth calls between him and
the coworker, he warned not to be alarmed at the blood on him when
they met at his hotel. The contractor said he was beaten up and had
been to the hospital, but the scrapes looked like road rash from
falling down and did not appear to have been cared for my medical
personnel. The contractor appeared disorientated, so the coworker
helped him back to his room and called police and paramedics to have
him evaluated.

Later, after everyone had left, the contractor called his manager,
supervisor and coworker and told them all various versions of what
happened; a homeless guy beat him up and he had filed the police
report; he was stabbed; he was hit from behind and fell down in the
street. When he failed to produce a police report as requested by his
supervisor, his security clearance was suspended pending further
investigation. Eventually his clearance was revoked based on concerns
under personal conduct and psychological conditions. At his appeal,
the contractor claimed to have misremembered or misinterpreted things
that happened that day but admitted to lying about going to the
hospital and filing a police report. The personal conduct issue was
not mitigated, and the appeal was denied. You can read the entire case
summary here.


  1. I certainly could do that… but I think you captured the truly bizarre nature of this case already

  2. Interesting culture. I see the psychologists carry ultimate authority with your judge, and opine about street fighting capability and concussions too. I’m not DOE, obviously—-they’re all so bizarre, a little too much emf exposure I suspect. What grabs my attention is the obvious head injury (and yes I understand a firefighter cleared him but that’s not concussion protocol—I understand the victim was uncooperative, which is to be expected, and, if the psychologists are good for anything, it’s agreeing that yes, this guy would likely react that way after hitting his head at least once, perhaps twice). Of course I can understand why location is not disclosed, but I’ve crept around some high-end hotels in some bad neighborhoods myself. Other evidence leaves me with the opinion that nothing about this is bizarre, only unexplained and univestigated. A fascinating read, thank you for sharing.