Black Female ATF Agent Suing Racist Supervisor for Years of Abuse, Discrimination

Federal agent Bradford Devlin, a senior supervisor in the Seattle Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), is facing a lawsuit filed by Cheryl Bishop alleging years of racist attacks and discrimination.

Devlin has a Nazi tattoo on his arm from years working undercover with a white supremacist biker gang, but he has refused to have it removed, despite the ATF offering to pay for the removal. He also has a history of racist emails and attacks, particularly on Bishop, a Black female agent that swiftly rose through the ranks at ATF, according to The Seattle Times.

Bishop is an ATF supervisor and former bomb-dog handler. She said that she first complained about Devlin’s abuse in 2016.

“For years, I asked ATF to put a stop to the harassment,” Bishop said in a written response to The Seattle Times on the lawsuit. “But the Agency ignored me. Although I kept doing my job, enduring the pain was tearing me apart, so when enough became enough I stood up to the abuse. ATF’s only response was to punish me. This was my #metoo, and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.”

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Bishop filed her lawsuit in 2018. In the lawsuit, Bishop says that after she complained about Devlin’s alleged abuse, the agency halted a prestigious job opportunity at its headquarters in Washington, D.C. Bishop also alleges that Devlin regularly showed off his Nazi tattoo, bad-mouthed her to federal prosecutors and other law enforcement officials, sent racist text messages in a group chat that she was in and called her “bossy” and “worthless.”

The lawsuit also states that “she found a banana placed on the hood of her car in her new parking spot next to Devlin’s spot — a racist symbol of viewing Black people as monkeys.”

Devlin has claimed in a letter to ATF that he is being discriminated against “based upon my race” as a white man after ATF rescinded a promotion when he refused to have the tattoo removed, according to The Seattle Times.