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Michael Sherwin. Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images

The former acting U.S. attorney in Washington, who was under investigation over comments he made about the Jan. 6 Capitol attack, has left the Justice Department, AP reported Friday.

The big picture: Michael Sherwin suggested in a CBS "60 Minutes" interview that some of the rioters could face rarely-used charges of sedition, echoing comments he had made previously at news conferences. Days before the interview aired in March, Sherwin was replaced as the top prosecutor in Washington, according to AP.

Catch up quick: Sherwin's comments drew heat from U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta, who's overseeing one of the conspiracy cases stemming from the Jan. 6 riot, AP reported.

  • “These types of statements in the media have the potential to affect the jury pool and the rights of these defendants,” Mehta said, adding that further press statements by the DOJ could lead to a gag order or sanctions.

A person familiar with the matter told AP that senior Justice officials never forbade Sherwin from speaking with reporters, and had asked him to discuss the investigation at news conferences.

Between the lines: Since Sherwin is no longer employed by the DOJ, he can't be subject to disciplinary actions from the Office of Professional Responsibility, per AP.

  • It's unclear if the investigation into Sherwin's "60 Minutes" interview will continue.

Go deeper

Merrick Garland rapidly erasing Trump effect at Justice Department

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images

Attorney General Merrick Garland is quickly negating the Trump administration’s law enforcement legacy, dismaying conservatives with a burst of aggressive reversals and new policies.

Why it matters: As a former prosecutor and respected federal judge, Garland's devotion to the rule of law has always been core to his identity. That reputation has taken on new importance in his first 50 days on the job, after four years of allegations that Trump's DOJ was improperly politicized.

CDC says fully vaccinated people don't have to wear masks indoors

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky. Photo: Erin Clark-Pool/Getty Images

The CDC announced in new guidance Thursday that anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in indoor and outdoor activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, regardless of crowd size.

What they're saying: "If you are fully vaccinated, you are protected, and you can start doing the things that you stopped doing because of the pandemic," CDC Director Rochelle Walensky will say at a White House press briefing.

Colonial Pipeline reportedly paid hackers nearly $5 million in ransom

Photo: Logan Cyrus/AFP via Getty Images

Colonial Pipeline paid hackers linked to the DarkSide cybercrime group nearly $5 million in cryptocurrency after last week's ransomware attack, Bloomberg first reported and the New York Times confirmed.

Why it matters: The breach of the largest refined fuels pipeline in the U.S. triggered new concerns about the vulnerability of the country's increasingly digitized energy systems.

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