Former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence speaks during the Nixon National Energy Conference at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum in Yorba Linda, Calif., Wednesday, April 19, 2023.
Eric Thayer | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Former Vice President Mike Pence will not be charged in the Justice Department’s investigation into classified documents found at his Indiana home.
The Justice Department’s national security division told Pence’s lawyer in a letter that it was concluding its investigation and that it would not file charges based on the “findings” of its investigation, NBC News reported earlier Friday morning.
A DOJ official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the matter, confirmed to CNBC the authenticity of the letter sent Thursday. Another source familiar with the matter, who also spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the investigation, confirmed that Pence would not face charges. Pence’s attorney did not immediately respond to CNBC’s requests for comment.
The conclusion of the investigation comes less than a week before Pence announced he is running for president. The GOP primary will pit Pence against his former boss, former President Donald Trump, who has been embroiled in a much larger investigation into classified documents stored at his Mar-a-Lago resort home since he left office in 2021
In January, Pence’s lawyer said a “small number” of classified documents were found at his home in Carmel, Indiana. The lawyer said Pence did not know the documents were there and had hired an outside lawyer to search his home for such materials “out of an abundance of caution” following the discovery of classified records in President Joe Biden’s private home.
Less than a month later, the FBI conducted a five-hour search of Pence’s residence and discovered an additional classified document.
Trump, meanwhile, faces a federal criminal investigation into the hundreds of classified documents that were removed from Mar-a-Lago after he left the White House. An FBI search of the Palm Beach, Fla., resort last August turned up more than 100 additional classified records and a trove of other materials seized by federal agents.
A DOJ special prosecutor is leading the investigation into these documents as well as possible obstruction of justice. Trump has denied wrongdoing and has publicly said he declassified his ownership records. News outlets reported this week that the special counsel had obtained a 2021 audio recording of Trump admitting that a document he had kept since his presidency was classified.
In a social media post on Friday, Trump said it was “great” that the DOJ was not bringing charges against Pence, but wondered when he too would be “completely exonerated.”
“I’m at least as innocent as he is,” Trump wrote of Pence.