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Peter Paul Strzok II

March 7, 1970 (age 50)

Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, U.S.

Education Tehran American School
Saint John's Preparatory School
Alma mater Georgetown University (BA, MA)
Occupation Former FBI agent
Spouse(s) Melissa Hodgman

Peter Paul Strzok II (/strʌk/, like struck; born March 7, 1970)[1] is a former United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agent.[2][3][4] Strzok was the Chief of the Counterespionage Section and led the FBI's investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a personal email server.[5][4][6]

Strzok rose to become a Deputy Assistant Director (one of several) of the Counterintelligence Division, the second-highest position in that division. He also led the FBI's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections.[4][7][8][9]

In June and July 2017, Strzok worked on Robert Mueller's Special Counsel investigation into any links or coordination between Donald Trump's presidential campaign and the Russian government.[10][7][9] Mueller removed Strzok from the Russia investigation when Mueller became aware of criticisms of Trump contained in personal text messages exchanged between Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page.[11][12]Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein defended Mueller's response to the text messages.

The revelation of the text messages led Republican congressmen and right-wing media to speculate that Strzok participated in a conspiracy to undermine the Trump presidency.[13][14][15][16] A comprehensive review in February 2018 of Strzok's messages by The Wall Street Journal concluded that "texts critical of Mr. Trump represent a fraction of the roughly 7,000 messages, which stretch across 384 pages and show no evidence of a conspiracy against Mr. Trump".[17]

On August 10, 2018, David Bowdich, the FBI deputy director, fired Strzok for the anti-Trump text messages.[2] On August 6, 2019, Strzok filed a wrongful termination suit against the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice, asking to be reinstated and awarded back pay. He asserted in the suit that his text messages were "protected political speech," and that his termination violated the First Amendment.[18] In December 2019, a report by the Justice Department inspector general found that Strzok was not motivated by bias in his work on the FBI investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 elections.[19]

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