A U.S. immigration official accused in a federal report of hindering law enforcement agents seeking a suspect in the San Bernardino terror attack and then lying about it has been nominated for a prestigious award – for telling her employees to stay calm and fetching one who was eating lunch in his car.
FoxNews.com reported in June that Irene Martin, who heads the San Bernardino U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office, had been nominated for the Department of Homeland Security “Award for Valor.” But the department refused to say what Martin had done to earn consideration for an award previously given to government employees who saved people from sinking ships and burning cars and confronted gun-wielding criminals.
The answer was only revealed through a Freedom of Information Act request. As the Dec. 2, 2015, attack unfolded a mile and a half away, Martin “warned [her] employees to be very careful and to be vigil (sic) about their surroundings,” according to the nominating petition.
When Martin learned that one member of her staff was sitting in his car after returning from lunch, a security guard refused to go and get him, saying the office was under lockdown.
“[Director] Martin took it upon herself to walk out to the parking lot, locate the employee and escort him back inside where he would be safer,” the petition stated, adding that she also soothed members of the public who were temporarily stranded in the building.
“Martin’s actions on that terrible day demonstrated not only her professionalism and exceptional leadership, but also her compassion and caring for her employees and the public we serve,” read the nomination.
By Malia Zimmerman for Fox News
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