Over a year after a photo of comedian Kathy Griffin brandishing an effigy of President Donald Trump’s severed head broke the internet and nearly ruined her career, Griffin took to The Late Show with Stephen Colbert to reveal new details of the fallout after the photo went viral.
While Griffin’s subsequent firing from her longtime gig covering New Year’s Eve on CNN was highly publicized—as well as outcry from the First Lady and the President himself—Griffin newly revealed that she faced a federal investigation for conspiracy to assassinate the President of the United States.
“So I’ve been digging myself out of this rabbit hole for the last year and a half and the next day I got a call from one of my attorneys that the Department of Justice—and a lot of people don’t know this part—actually two federal agencies, the Secret Service and the…assistant U.S. Attorney’s office, were putting me under a two month federal investigation and considering charging me with the crime—this is real—of conspiracy to assassinate the President of the United States.”
Hear the audible gasps from the audience in the full interview below:
Griffin noted that she likely wouldn’t pose for the same picture now, but feels that the federal government using taxpayer money for an investigation into an assassination attempt is retaliatory and overreaching.
Since the incident, Griffin has toured across Europe and is rebuilding her career in the United States. She also revoked her initial apology to Donald Trump and his family.
Even almost two years later, the debacle still has the internet divided.
Some believe Griffin was just joking, while the President’s hateful rhetoric has real consequences.
I never thought it was funny but I also don’t think it’s a joke when the president incites or encourages violence by white supremacists or people who believe everything that the president says about his political rivals and the media. There are people taking action on his words!
— donna (@1106djo) December 8, 2018
Whatever one may think of her original action, she has proven the magic of this country…that you can re-invent yourself. She has become a world wide celebrity and now controls her entire brand and supply chain. That’s pretty spectacular for a 58 year old woman. M
— Deborah Hendrix (@hendrix183) December 8, 2018
Nothing but federal government intimidation.
— Mark T. Card (@MarkTCard) December 8, 2018
On one hand we have a comedian holding a fake severed head of ‘trump’ sparking out rage – on the other we have said president putting children in cages without a blip on the out rage scale. White woman vs white man – parody vs reality folks.
— lea folland (@leafolland) December 8, 2018
Nevertheless, some still feel the outrage matched the offense.
Can’t stand her now and never could.
— Cassie Blansett (@cassiewest1984) December 9, 2018
Should have been charged.
— Roy Blanco 🇺🇸 (@roymblanco) December 8, 2018
What happened to just being funny. How can holding up a bloody head of anyone be comic genius. Kathy deserved the pushback and learned a costly lesson.
— John Mclaughlin (@Jmac103John) December 8, 2018
Actions. Have. Consequences.
If you don’t want to do the time, then don’t do the crime.
— Require Truth (@requiretruth) December 8, 2018
As her resurgence has proven, it will take a lot more than posing with a ketchup-covered mask to take this comedian down.