An employee at former US President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence drained the resort’s swimming pool last October and ended up flooding a room where computer servers containing surveillance video logs were kept, sources familiar with the matter told CNN on Monday.
While it is unclear if the room was intentionally flooded or if it happened by mistake, the incident occurred amid a series of events that federal prosecutors found suspicious, according to the report.
At least one witness has been asked by prosecutors about the flooded server room as part of the federal investigation into Trump’s handling of classified documents, according to one of the sources.
The incident, which has not been previously reported, came roughly two months after the FBI retrieved hundreds of classified documents from the Florida residence and as prosecutors obtained surveillance footage to track how White House records were moved around the resort.
Prosecutors have been examining any effort to obstruct the Justice Department’s investigation after Trump received a subpoena in May 2022 for classified documents.
Prosecutors have heard testimony that the IT equipment in the room was not damaged in the flood, according to one source.
One report has indicated that a document describing a foreign government’s military defenses, including its nuclear capabilities, was found by FBI agents during the search of Trump’s home.
A subsequent report said some of the classified documents recovered by the FBI from Mar-a-Lago included highly sensitive intelligence regarding Iran and China.
In November of 2022, US Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Smith as special counsel to oversee investigations into Trump, including the probe of the classified documents.
Smith’s prosecutors have been asking questions in recent months about the handling of surveillance footage at Mar-a-Lago resort and discussions Trump’s employees had about the surveillance system after the subpoena last summer for the footage, according to multiple sources quoted by CNN.
Recently, investigators have asked questions indicating they are trying to determine if workers at Mar-a-Lago received specific direction from above, particularly from Trump himself, to obstruct the investigation.
The sources say that the maintenance worker is the person who drained the pool that led to the flooding of the IT room where the surveillance footage was held.
The maintenance worker recently spoke to investigators in an interview, and his phone has been seized, some of the sources told CNN.
Last week, CNN reported that federal prosecutors have obtained an audio recording of a summer 2021 meeting in which Trump acknowledges he held onto a classified Pentagon document about a potential attack on Iran.
Trump insists that he declassified the documents in question before leaving office. The former President and his lawyers have publicly insinuated on multiple occasions that the agents who carried out the raid planted evidence during the search.