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House Ethics declines to investigate Rep. Jamaal Bowman over fire alarm incident

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The House Ethics committee announced Wednesday that it would not launch an investigation into Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) after he triggered a fire alarm during a chaotic vote on a stopgap government funding bill.

Bowman had been charged with a misdemeanor by the D.C. Attorney General last month over the fire alarm incident, kicking off the Ethics panel’s process for investigating a lawmaker. But the ethics committtee, which is evenly split between Republicans and Democrats, voted not to establish an investigative subpanel or deliver a report to the full House. Bowman pleaded guilty last month to a misdemeanor charge related to triggering the false fire alarm and agreed to pay the maximum fine.

“A majority of the Members of the Committee did not agree to establish an [Investigative Subcommittee] or report to the House regarding Representative Bowman’s conduct,” said Ethics Chair Michael Guest (R-Miss.) and ranking member Rep. Susan Wild (D-Pa.).

Bowman’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment. He has said that he did not intend to obstruct or delay congressional proceedings when he triggered the alarm, as many of his Republican critics have charged.