The brother of an alleged US Capitol rioter is a US Secret Service agent who once led former first lady Michelle Obama’s detail, CNN has learned.
Preston Fairlamb III, the brother of Scott Fairlamb – a man who faces five charges connected to his alleged role in the Capitol insurrection – is a member of the Secret Service and, according to Obama’s 2018 memoir, had “led my detail” at one point.
“All of us grew close to our agents over time. Preston Fairlamb led my detail then,” Obama wrote in “Becoming.” She attended the 2012 memorial service for the Fairlamb’s father, according to a statement by the church where the memorial service was held.
Scott Fairlamb’s attorney, Harley Breite, told CNN that Preston Fairlamb III was unaware of his brother’s alleged actions during the attack on the Capitol. “He was not privy to anything that my client is alleged to have done that day,” he said.
CNN has made multiple attempts to reach Preston Fairlamb III directly. The US Secret Service and Obama’s office have yet to respond to CNN’s requests for comment.
So far, the Justice Department has charged more than 125 defendants related to the Capitol riots. The charges have largely functioned as placeholders – the types of complaints that allow authorities to make arrests, search homes and pursue broader investigations that could go before a federal grand jury in the coming days.
Many of the cases stick to bare bones allegations, based on livestreamed video or social media posts, and accuse rioters of disorderly conduct and entering restricted property. Some of the rioters have turned themselves in to police and already admitted their alleged crimes.
Law enforcement officials say they are now moving from the so-called low-hanging fruit arrests and charges to more complicated cases, focusing on the extremist groups that participated in the attack.
That effort will take months to try to piece together, in part, because unlike some of the early arrests of suspects – who gleefully posted on social media or even live-streamed their involvement – many alleged attackers took pains to hide their identities and their involvement.
CNN’s Katelyn Polantz, Jason Hoffman, David Shortell and Dan Merica contributed to this report.