The FBI has been examining a violent domestic dispute from nine years ago between acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and his then-wife as part of a background investigation ahead of his possible confirmation hearing to be President Trump’s permanent defense chief.
Both Shanahan and Jordinson acknowledged in court filings and police reports that a late-night argument on Aug. 28, 2010, after both had been drinking, spilled from their bedroom to the front yard of their Seattle home. The incident escalated into a clash that police said left him with a bloodied nose and hand and her with a blood-stained forearm. But their accounts diverged on who was to blame, as well as the claim Jordinson reported to officers and later outlined in divorce papers: that Shanahan punched her in the stomach.
Shanahan denied hitting her and told police that she was the aggressor and that she had punched him “10 to 20 times,” according to police records obtained by USA TODAY. Officers – noting in part that Jordinson’s bloody forearm appeared consistent with her having attacked her husband – arrested Jordinson on suspicion of domestic violence. Prosecutors later dropped the charge, citing a lack of evidence.
The competing accounts of the fight are outlined in hundreds of pages of court files and police records, as well as police photographs, audio recordings and an interview with USA TODAY in which Shanahan’s former wife reiterated her accusations.
Update: Trump announced on twitter that Shanahan has withdrawn from his nomination.