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FBI questions Congressman's ex-chauffeur

CERES, California (CNN) -- A former chauffeur to Congressman Gary Condit said the FBI asked him whether he believed the California Democrat could have killed Chandra Levy, the missing former intern who has been linked to the lawmaker.

Vince Flammini, the former driver, said he told the FBI "no."

"They asked me, 'What do you think happened to Chandra?'" Flammini said in an interview with CNN. "'Did Gary kill her?' I said, 'Nah. Gary wouldn't kill her.' I said, 'Not in a million years,' I says, 'But he would drive her to the brink, of making her think that he loved her so much that she couldn't handle it. She might have been a little weaker than people think.'"

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Mired in controversy, Congressman Gary Condit skipped a fourth of July parade in his hometown. CNN's Rusty Dornin reports (July 4)

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The FBI confirmed agents had interviewed Flammini, and Condit's attorney confirmed that Flammini had worked for the congressman. Attorney Abbe Lowell said the congressman would have no comment about Flammini's claims.

Levy, 24, was last seen April 30 at a Washington gym. Police are treating her disappearance as a missing person case and said there is no indication of foul play.

D.C. Police Chief Charles Ramsey said Condit is just one of 100 people they have interviewed in connection with the case.

Condit, through aides, has said he was friends with Levy, who had just completed an internship with the federal Bureau of Prisons, but the 53-year-old married father of two has denied speculation about an affair.

Flammini, who was recently let go by Condit, said he was not seeking revenge against the congressman by talking about his former boss.

"I want to know what happened to this girl, just like everybody else," he said. "And I pray every day that we find out what happened to her. But I do not, in my heart, feel that Gary has anything to do with her disappearance, except that he might have a little bit more information that might help the police. And I don't think he'd tell if you'd put him in one of those medieval stretchers."

Flammini said he also knew of Condit's relationship with a flight attendant. That woman, Anne Marie Smith, went public with her story of an affair earlier this week and said that Condit had asked her to lie about it.

In a statement Tuesday, Condit did not describe what, if any, relationship he had with Smith but said he had never asked her to "mislead the authorities" investigating' Levy's disappearance.

"No doubt in my mind whatsoever that they were having an affair," Flammini said, adding that he thought Condit let him go because he knew of the relationship.

Ramsey, whose department is heading the investigation into Levy's disappearance and working with the FBI, criticized speculation about Condit's romantic life.

"We're not the sex police here," he told reporters. "We're trying to investigate a missing person."







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