WASHINGTON (AP) — A Coast Guard investigator accompanying Maryland State Police to serve a search warrant in a weapons investigation at a Maryland home seized unrelated government documents and notes from a journalist who was the suspect's wife.
The Coast Guard says its investigator was suspicious that the documents found were labeled "law enforcement sensitive."
The government subsequently returned the papers after concluding the reporter had obtained them under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act.
The seizure comes amid ongoing criticism of the Obama administration's efforts to root out leaks in the administration and the targeting of journalists as part of those leak investigations. It happened one month after Attorney General Eric Holder toughened the Justice Department's own rules for seizing reporters' phone records, notes or emails using federal subpoenas or search warrants.