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Tag: Washington

We May Never Feel As Safe As We Did on Sept. 10, 2001

Allan Lengel

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Thirteen years  ago today, I was walking down Connecticut Avenue NW  in Washington, D.C.,  on my way to work, about to get on the subway, when I ran into a friend who asked if I had heard about a plane crashing into the World Trade Center.

I hadn’t. By the time I got off the subway at the Farragut North stop downtown, the city was in a panic. I ran into my editor at the Washington Post, who said she had heard that planes had crashed into the Pentagon and the State Department. Rumors were running rampant.

We got to the newsroom and everyone was standing around TVs watching the incredulous events unfold. 

A second plane had already crashed into the World Trade Center and a third had crashed into the Pentagon, not all that far away. We were under attack.

We all got our assignments. I was sent to D.C. Police headquarters on Indiana Avenue NW to hang out all day. I walked there, about 1.5 miles.  On the way over there, you could hear everyone on the street calling loved ones, checking in.

At police headquarters, a  group of reporters stood out front, hanging out. The police chief, Charles Ramsey, (who is now the Philadelphia Police chief) would occasionally drive by and give us updates. A plane in Pennsylvania was still unaccounted for. We kept looking up at the sky wondering if it just might come our way.

The world changed that day. We had been shaken before as Americans. We had the Oklahoma City bombing and the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, but this was of a magnitude we had never seen before.

We’ve learned a lot since that time. At first, the FBI, jittery from not unearthing the 9/11 plot, and getting plenty blame for that, followed up on every tip it got, regardless of how silly it might have seemed. In time, it learned to separate the wheat from the chaff. Also, for a while, authorities were overly paranoid about anyone in D.C. taking photos or video of buildings. That eventually changed.

Plus, the government, the White House, the FBI and other agencies,  had a lot to learn about Islam.  The FBI shifted its top priority to terrorism, and we created the Department of Homeland Security, which frankly, the verdict is still out on how effective that has been.

Since that day, Sept. 11, 2001, we’ve become far more aware of  the potential terrorism threat.

Frankly, in the days that followed Sept. 11, 2001, I thought life would never be normal again.  Fortunately, things have returned to some semblance of normalcy.

But we’ll likely never feel as safe as we did on Sept. 10, 2001.

Lengel: We May Never Feel as Safe As We Did on Sept. 10, 2001

Allan Lengel

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Thirteen years  ago today, I was walking down Connecticut Avenue NW  in Washington, D.C.,  on my way to work, about to get on the subway, when I ran into a friend who asked if I had heard about a plane crashing into the World Trade Center.

I hadn’t. By the time I got off the subway at the Farragut North stop downtown, the city was in a panic. I ran into my editor at the Washington Post, who said she had heard that planes had crashed into the Pentagon and the State Department. Rumors were running rampant.

We got to the newsroom and everyone was standing around TVs watching the incredulous events unfold. 

A second plane had already crashed into the World Trade Center and a third had crashed into the Pentagon, not all that far away. We were under attack.

We all got our assignments. I was sent to D.C. Police headquarters on Indiana Avenue NW to hang out all day. I walked there, about 1.5 miles.  On the way over there, you could hear everyone on the street calling loved ones, checking in.

At police headquarters, a  group of reporters stood out front, hanging out. The police chief, Charles Ramsey, (who is now the Philadelphia Police chief) would occasionally drive by and give us updates. A plane in Pennsylvania was still unaccounted for. We kept looking up at the sky wondering if it just might come our way.

The world changed that day. We had been shaken before as Americans. We had the Oklahoma City bombing and the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, but this was of a magnitude we had never seen before.

We’ve learned a lot since that time. At first, the FBI, jittery from not unearthing the 9/11 plot, and getting plenty blame for that, followed up on every tip it got, regardless of how silly it might have seemed. In time, it learned to separate the wheat from the chaff. Also, for a while, authorities were overly paranoid about anyone in D.C. taking photos or video of buildings. That eventually changed.

Plus, the government, the White House, the FBI and other agencies,  had a lot to learn about Islam.  The FBI shifted its top priority to terrorism, and we created the Department of Homeland Security, which frankly, the verdict is still out on how effective that has been.

Since that day, Sept. 11, 2001, we’ve become far more aware of  the potential terrorism threat.

Frankly, in the days that followed Sept. 11, 2001, I thought life would never be normal again.  Fortunately, things have returned to some semblance of normalcy.

But we’ll likely never feel as safe as we did on Sept. 10, 2001.

International Fight Turns Around so FBI Can Arrest Mom in Parental Kidnapping Case

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI was able to get a United Airlines flight to turn around mid-flight from Washington Dulles International Airport to Beijing to arrest a passenger accused of parental kidnapping, the Washington Post reports.

The mother, Wenking Liu, was arrested Thursday evening at Dulles International Airport, where the plan returned.

Liu was charged with unlawfully attempting to remover her son from the U.S. with intent to obstruct the lawful exercise of parental rights.

The boy’s father reported the kidnapping, prompting agents to urge the airline to turn the flight around.

 

FBI Joins Search for Missing 6-Year-old Girl in Washington State

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is helping search for a 6-year-old girl who disappeared from her Washington state home this weekend, The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.

The parents, who took FBI-administered polygraph tests, said they waited a day – Sunday – to report Jenise Wright missing because she often wanders off in the fenced-in mobile home park in Bremerton, across from Seattle on the west side of Puget sound.

“We are harnessing all this manpower and expertise because we are covering all the bases,” Kitsap County Sheriff’s Deputy Scott Wilson said. “We only get one chance to do this right the first time.”

Local and state authorities also are searching.

“Anything is possible,” he said. “Children do really surprising things. She could be almost anywhere.”

FBI Refuses to Conduct Pot Background Checks in Washington State Despite Actions in Colorado

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI won’t conduct nationwide background checks on people applying to operate a legal marijuana business in Washington state in stark contrast to the handling of applicants in Colorado, the Associated Press reports.

The FBI’s refusal to conduct the checks surprised officials in Washington because the federal agency does similar background checks in Colorado, where marijuana also is legal for recreational use.

The inconsistent practices of the FBI worries some.

Others in Washington state are worried that people with egregious criminal histories will end up with pot licenses.

DEA Accuses Man of Selling Heroin from Doggy Daycare Center

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The DEA wasn’t barking up the wrong tree when agents raided a doggy daycare in Washington state.

King 5 News reports that Arlington Doggy Daycare was selling heroin out of its business in Arlingotn.

Busted was 42-year-old David Funk, who was charged this week with knowingly and internationally distributing heroin.

Funk also lives in a mobile home on the property of Arlington Doggy Daycare.

His relationship with the business wasn’t immediately clear.

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Prolific Bank Robber with 2 Monickers Is Busted in Washington State

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The suspect is accused of robbing so many banks that he’s earned two nicknames – the “Elephant Man Bandit” and “Cyborg Bandit.”

Seattlepi.com reports that authorities arrested a 44-year-old Washington state man on suspicion of robbing 30 banks in the Seattle and Marysville areas in the past year.

“(We’re) very elated,” Capt. Steven Paulsen of the Seattle Police Department said Wednesday. “This person has impacted the entire Puget Sound region.”

FBI agents and local police said the man wore latex gloves and covered his face. When he wore a metallic fabric over his face, he was known as the “Cyborg Bandit.” When he covered his head with shirt, he was called “Elephant Man Bandit.”

The man was arrested Tuesday after authorities followed around his van.

Ex-Secret Service Agent’s Book About Serving Under Obama Climbs New York Times Bestseller List

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Dan Bongino’s book about his time as a high-level Secret Service agent under President Obama is taking off and has reached the New York Times bestseller list.

“Life Inside the Bubble: Why a Top-Ranked Secret Service Agent Walked Away From It All” tells the story of Washington insiders shielding the president from the fallout of poor policy choices.

The book climbed to No. 13 on the coveted bestseller list.

Bongino is running for Congress in Maryland’s Sixth District.