Notes on a Suicide
The New York Times published a front-page story today about Charles D. Riechers, the senior Air Force procurement official who took his own life following the revelation that he had been placed into a private consulting job for two months while awaiting confirmation for his Air Force post.
Post reporter Robert O'Harrow Jr. broke the story about the arrangement, which paid Reichers $13,400 a month. The Times reports that Riechers, who was described as a highly competent straight arrow, was devastated that he had become the center of a scandal that led to investigations by the Senate Armed Services Committee, the Government Accountability Office and the Pentagon Inspector General.
The story states that Air Force officials said there was nothing illegal about the arrangement and have begun an aggressive campaign to clear Riechers' reputation. The story also notes that officials privately had "acknowledged that the inquiries surrounding Mr. Riechers had uncovered questionable practices in a proliferating and poorly regulated side of Pentagon procurement." The Post ombudsman weighed in on the matter on Nov. 4.
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