Not to outdo Fourth of July pyrotechnics with his own political fireworks, Rep. Gary Condit was noticeably absent from Independence Day festivities in his central California district.
The congressman traditionally spends the holiday at three parades, waving to constituents from the back of a convertible and basking in the pride of his farming district.
"Another circumstance arose that he had to attend to," said Mike Lynch, Condit's chief of staff. Lynch declined to say what that development was but said Condit's reason would become clear in a few days.
Condit canceled his Fourth of July appearances early in the morning as controversy continued to mount surrounding allegations of affairs with missing intern Chandra Levy and 39-year-old flight attendent Anne Marie Smith.
On Thursday, law enforcement officials in Washington interviewed Condit's wife, Carolyn, to corroborate statements Condit made to police in two previous interviews and to ask her if she'd ever had any contact with Levy.
Sources told WTTG-TV in Washington that the interview took place at the FBI office in Tysons Corner, Va. No details of the interview were immediately available.
The Washington Times reported Wednesday that the FBI has interviewed six women, including Smith, who claim to have had affairs with the congressman.
The Times did not identify the five other women. Washington police say they've interviewed a dozen women about Levy's disappearance, including former interns and workers in Condit's office, The New York Post reported Thursday.
Police in Washington say the congressman is not a suspect in 24-year-old Levy's disappearance.
At a press conference Thursday, D.C. Police Chief Charles Ramsey said Condit "is one of 100 people" they're looking at. They're not getting a search warrant for Condit's home because they have no reason to ask for one, he said.
"We don't have anything to connect him to her disappearance," Ramsey said.
Ramsey also said police had no evidence of suicide.
"We've not come across any information that would indicate she was despondent or anything else," he said.
Levy, a former Bureau of Prisons intern, hasn't been heard from since April 30 — two days after Condit said he broke off his friendship with her, law enforcement sources told Fox News. The sources also said Condit described Chandra as distraught over the relationship's end.
Condit has described Levy as a "great person and a good friend," but has said little else.
Aides have denied the 53-year-old married congressman was having an affair with Levy, but Chandra's mother, Susan Levy, has said her daughter said in April that she was seeing Condit. Condit has represented their district in Congress since 1989.
On Tuesday, congressional sources told Fox News there is deep concern at the highest levels of the Democratic leadership over the way Condit has handled the Levy matter.
The sources said there are private talks among Democratic leaders that Condit should not run for re-election, or that he should step down.
The New York Post reported Thursday that Levy's parents, Robert and Susan Levy, are threatening to appear in campaign commercials attacking Condit if he decides to run again.
In an interview with The Associated Press at her Modesto, Calif., home on Wednesday, Susan Levy wouldn't discuss Condit or the private conversation she had with him a week ago in Washington.
"It's awful. It's like a dream I want to be over," she said.
During the interview, she received a call from Smith, the United Airlines flight attendant who claims to have had a 10-month affair with Condit. Smith is one of the six women reported to have been interviewed by the FBI.
Susan Levy spoke only briefly with Smith, telling her she was a "sweetheart."
"I thanked her for being brave and coming forward," she said. She wouldn't comment further on the conversation.
Earlier this week, Smith said Condit asked her to sign a form denying the affair.
One of Condit's lawyers said a form was sent to Smith after an inquiry about their relationship from Star magazine, but said she wasn't urged to sign it. In a brief statement Tuesday, Condit said: "I have not asked anyone to refrain from discussing this matter with authorities, nor have I suggested anyone mislead the authorities."
Condit's former driver, Vince Flammini, says he told the FBI that the congressman and Smith were having an affair, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.