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Aaron Alexis lied about record to get security clearance

WASHINGTON -- The Washington Navy Yard shooter lied about a previous arrest and failed to disclose thousands of dollars in debts when he applied for a security clearance in the Navy.

Then federal investigators dismissed the omissions, and made one of their own – deleting any reference to Aaron Alexis' use of a gun in that arrest.

The gaps in his record eventually allowed him to work in the secure Navy building where he gunned down 12 workers last week, underscoring weaknesses with the clearance process that Navy officials are targeting for change.

Navy Secretary Ray Mabus recommended Monday that all police reports – not just arrests or convictions – involving an individual must be included when a background check is done. He also recommended that the Navy enhance its management of sailor evaluations and fitness reports by assigning more senior officers to oversee them.

The Navy, in a report released Monday, revealed new details about Alexis' Navy service, including his failure to reveal the 2004 arrest over a parking disagreement in Seattle. And officials said the background report given to the Navy omitted the fact that he shot out the tires of another person's car during that dispute.

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