News Release: Attkisson v. DOJ and FBI for govt. computer intrusions


Oral Arguments

Attkisson v. Dept. of Justice, FBI et. al.
Tues. Jan. 29; 9:30am
US Court of Appeals, 1100 E. Main St., Richmond, VA

Public is Welcome to Attend

First publicly announced on Aug. 7, 2013, oral arguments will be heard in the case of Investigative Reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s computer intrusions on Tues. Jan. 29 at 9:30am.

Extensive, multiple independent exams have provided forensic evidence of the government nature of the computer intrusions on Attkisson and her family while she was a correspondent at CBS News. Since the Dept. of Justice has not taken steps to investigate or prosecute the intruders, Attkisson filed a civil suit in Washington D.C. to identify them by name and hold them accountable. The Dept. of Justice filed repeat attempts to dismiss the case, which the court denied. In 2016, Judge Emmett Sullivan transferred the case from Washington D.C. to the Eastern District of Virginia.

In 2017, Judge Leonie Brinkema dismissed Attkisson’s case agreeing— among other issues— that government officials have immunity for their actions. She also ruled the case should end because Attkisson had been unable to identify name all perpetrators.

Attkisson’s appeal, which has been accepted for oral arguments, argues on several counts including that her allegations fall under exceptions to immunity for government officials, and that she hasn’t been afforded a reasonable opportunity to identify the parties by name.

The Dept. of Justice holds the information needed, and has blocked all attempts at meaningful discovery in Attkisson v. DOJ and FBI.

If the appellate panel finds in Attkisson’s favor, the case would be returned to the Eastern District of Virginia where discovery could proceed. However, both sides have the opportunity to first either be heard by a larger panel of appellate judges, and/or appeal their case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Dept. of Justice has unlimited taxpayer money to spend fighting this case. Instead, it should be investigating its ranks to hold the guilty parties accountable and prevent government overreach and surveillance abuses from happening to other U.S. citizens.

Attkisson, attorney Tab Turner (left), and forensics specialist Don Allison prior to testimony to Congress

CBS News announcement in 2013 of the intrusions.

Attkisson 4th Amendment Litigation Fund, started by civil rights and privacy advocates.

Judge Emmet Sullivan opinion transferring the case.

Sharyl Attkisson

Sharyl Attkisson is a five-time Emmy Award winner and recipient of the Edward R. Murrow award for investigative reporting. She is author of two New York Times best sellers: “The Smear: How Shady Political Operatives and Fake News Control What You See, What You Think and How  You Vote,” and “Stonewalled.” She is host of the Sunday morning national TV news program, Sinclair’s “Full Measure,” which focuses on investigative and accountability reporting. 

Attkisson has delivered two popular TEDx talks: Is Fake News Real? (2017) and Astroturf and Manipulation of Media Messages (2015) that have drawn a combined 4+ million views online.

For thirty years, Attkisson was a correspondent and anchor at CBS News, PBS, CNN and in local news. 

In 2013, she received an Emmy Award for Outstanding Investigative Journalism for her reporting on “The Business of Congress,” which included an undercover investigation into fundraising by Republican freshmen. She received two other Emmy nominations in 2013 for “Benghazi: Dying for Security” and “Green Energy Going Red.” Additionally, Attkisson received a 2013 Daytime Emmy Award as part of the CBS Sunday Morning team’s entry for Outstanding Morning Program for her report: “Washington Lobbying: K-Street Behind Closed Doors.”

In September 2012, Attkisson received the Emmy for Outstanding Investigative Journalism and the RTNDA Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Investigative Reporting for the “Gunwalker: Fast and Furious” story. 

Attkisson received an Investigative Emmy Award in 2009 for her exclusive investigations into TARP and the bank bailout. She received an Investigative Emmy Award in 2002 for her series of exclusive reports about mismanagement at the Red Cross. 

Attkisson is one of the few journalists to have flown in a B-52 on a combat mission (over Kosovo) and in an F-15 fighter jet Combat Air Patrol flight. She is a fourth degree black belt in TaeKwonDo.

Previously, Attkisson hosted a medical news magazine on PBS called “HealthWeek,” anchored for CNN, and reported at several local news stations. She is a graduate of the University of Florida School of Journalism and Communications.

Awards List:


Finalist Gerald Loeb business awards for “Taxpayer Beware”

Barbara Olson Award for Excellence and Independence in Journalism


Kenneth Y. Tomlinson Award for Outstanding Reporting

“Courage in the Face of Power” Award, Weyrich Awards


Pillar Human Rights Journalism Award for “Fearless Reporting in the Face of Government Retaliation.”


Investigative Emmy Award for “Investigating Congress.”  

Investigative Emmy Award nomination for “Benghazi: Dying for Security.”  

Emmy Award nomination for “Green Energy Going Red.”  

Daytime Emmy Award as part of CBS Sunday Morning team Outstanding Morning Program for “Washington Lobbying: K-Street Behind Closed Doors.”  

Integrity in Journalism Award

Brian Terry Courage in Journalism and Reporting Award

Finalist, Gerald Loeb Business Awards for “The Business of Congress”      


Emmy Award for Outstanding Investigative Journalism for “Gunwalker: Fast and Furious.”  

RTNDA Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Investigative Reporting for “Gunwalker: Fast and Furious.” 


Emmy Award Nomination for Investigations of Congress: “Follow the Money.”  

Emmy Award Nomination for Investigating Aid to Haiti earthquake victims.          


Emmy Award for Outstanding Investigative Reporting of a Business News Story for series on the Bush Administration’s Bait-and-Switch on TARP and the Bank Bailout.  

Investigative Reporter and Editors Finalist Award for “Investigating TARP.”  

Loeb finalist for Television Breaking News for “Follow the Money: Bailout Investigation.”         


Emmy Award Nomination for “Follow the Money.”          


RTNDA-Edward R. Murrow Award for Overall Excellence (CBS team award)

Finalist for Gerald Loeb business awards for “Earmarks”    


RTNDA-Edward R. Murrow Award for Overall Excellence (CBS team award)      


Emmy Award Nomination for Investigating Dangers of certain prescription drugs and vaccines; and conflicts of interest in medical industry.            


Emmy Award for Outstanding Investigative Journalism for series on mismanagement at the Red Cross: “Red Cross Under Fire.”            


Emmy Award Nomination for “Firestone Tire Fiasco.”      

Civil Justice Foundation Special Commendation for Firestone Tire coverage.            


Investigative Reporter and Editors Finalist Award for series on the dangers of certain prescription drugs and vaccines.    

Attkisson received several other awards for her reporting and producing, including a New York Black Journalists Association public service award, a Mature Media National Award, a Florida Emmy Award, a Sigma Delta Chi Award and a Florida Communicator’s Award.

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