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Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein Delivers Remarks at the Press Conference Concerning the 2001 Murder of Thomas C. Wales


Seattle, WA
United States

Remarks as prepared for delivery.

Thank you, Annette. I am grateful for your leadership of this office over the past four years, and for your 21 years of devoted service to the Department of Justice.

I want to thank Tom Wales’s daughter, Amy, for joining us today to represent the Wales family. You have shown incredible strength and courage, and devotion to your father.

Along with all other federal prosecutors, I heard about Tom’s murder when it occurred, on October 11, 2001. Tom was murdered by a cowardly killer who shot him through a window late one night, while Tom was sitting at a desk in his own home.

About four years ago, I visited the U.S. Attorney’s Office here in Seattle for a cybercrime meeting hosted by Jenny Durkan. We met in the Wales Conference Room, named in honor of Tom.

I learned that Tom Wales was an exemplary prosecutor.  He made a tremendous impact on this community over his 18 years in this office. It is not acceptable that Tom’s family, friends and colleagues remain in a state of uncertainty about how he died. It is not acceptable that the killer remains unpunished.

As Deputy Attorney General, I intend to see to it that we leave no stone unturned in the search for the killer who murdered Tom Wales.

Last summer, I received a briefing from the leaders of the team conducting the federal investigation. And last fall, representatives of the National Association of Former U.S. Attorneys met with me to discuss the case.

Any attack on a law enforcement officer is an attack on our entire justice system. It is an attack on the rule of law.

I want to assure you that the murder investigation is very active. FBI Special Agent in Charge Jay Tabb will speak this morning about the extensive work being done by a task force of investigators and prosecutors. We are constantly and aggressively pursuing leads.

The task force includes FBI, Seattle Police Department, the Department of Justice, and the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. It includes agents, detectives, analysts, two federal prosecutors, a county prosecutor, and FBI personnel nationwide who follow investigative leads.

The scope of the work performed by the task force is extraordinarily comprehensive. We will continue to pursue this case for as long as it takes to achieve justice. The killer will be held accountable.

The Department of Justice and FBI are offering a reward of up to $1 million for information leading to an arrest and prosecution.

I came here today to encourage people with information about the murder of Tom Wales to come forward. We know that you are out there. The details that you know, small or large, may be important to us. 

So pick up the phone now and dial 1-800-CALL-FBI. Or send an email to

We are offering large rewards, but we encourage you to come forward for your own peace of mind, and for Tom’s family and friends.

I want to thank every law enforcement employee and every citizen who is helping to solve this case.

People who devote their careers to law enforcement do not consider it just a job. We speak often about bond that ties us together. Tom Wales and his family remain a part of our law enforcement family.

Amy, I want you and your family, and Tom’s friends and colleagues, to know that this case is one of the highest priorities of the Department of Justice. We will not rest until it is solved.

Our next speaker will be Michael McKay, a former U.S. Attorney here in Seattle, and the current President of the National Association of Former U.S. Attorneys Foundation.  Mike has worked tirelessly to support the investigation, and he has an important announcement to make today.

Updated February 21, 2018