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Archive for September, 2014

FBI Investigates Apparent Fire-Bombing Attempt of Congressman’s Office in Missouri

Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II/gov photo

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is investigating what appears to be an attempted fire-bombing of the Kansas, Mo., offices of Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, the Los Angeles Times reports.

An intrusion alarm alerted police to the incident at 2:52 a.m. Thursday at the one-story building at 101 W. 31 St.

“Upon arrival, they observed a window on the northwest side of the building to be broken out. On the ground below the window, they observed two broken bottles with paper towels sticking out the necks of the bottles. There was a chemical odor resembling that of lighter fluid,” according to the city police.

A broken window appeared to be the only damage.

This wasn’t the first such attack.

“This is the second incident within the last six years,” John Jones, Cleaver’s chief of staff said in a prepared statement. “The Kansas City police have completed their initial survey of the scene and we await their report. None of the staff was in the building, and because Congress is in session, Congressman Cleaver is in Washington.”

The FBI said it is investigating.

“We have no arrests yet, but we are very early in the investigation,” FBI spokeswoman Bridget Patton told the Los Angeles Times said.

Report: CBP Overspent by Building $680,000 Houses for Border Patrol Agents in Arizona

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Protection overspent when it built houses for Border Patrol agents in Arizona, an inspector general’s report has found.

The Associated Press reports that CBP spent nearly $700,000 per house in a town where the average home price is less than $90,000.

The investigating found that CBP spent about $17 million on land, 21 houses and 20 mobile homes. The agency overspent by about $4.6 million, the AP wrote.

The average house was $680,000, while the average mobile home cost $118,000 .

Construction was finished in December 2012 as a way to alleviate housing shortages for Border Patrol agents.

“CBP did not effectively plan and manage employee housing in Ajo, Arizona, and made decisions that resulted in additional costs to the federal government,” the report states.

While the CBP agreed with the recommendations, it denied wrongdoing.

“CBP relies on the private housing market to provide housing for its employees, except in a few extreme locations such as Ajo,” the agency said in a statement released by spokesman Jim Burns. “In Ajo, CBP built urgently needed housing for employees in accordance with the approved CBP design standards and the U.S. government guidance to be used by executive agencies concerning construction of federally owned housing for civilians.”

Video: Man Wearing Pokemon Hat Jumps Over North Fence of White House on Sept. 11 Anniversary

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Local and federal authorities raided the home Thursday of the murder suspect of two district attorneys and one of their spouses, NBCDFW.com reports.

Meanwhile, lawyers for suspect Eric Williams plan to ask a judge today for a trial delay, saying they need more time.
It’s believed that new evidence surfaced during the raid.

Included were the FBI, ATF, Texas Rangers, special prosecutors and Kaufman County Sheriff’s Department.

Williams, who worked as a Kaufman County justice of the peace, is suspected of murdering Assistant Kaufman County District Attorney Mark Hasse, District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife, Cynthia.

Other Stories of Interest


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.

NFL Commissioners Urges Former FBI Director Mueller to Investigate Ray Rice Incident

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has asked former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to lead an investigation into the league’s “pursuit and handling of evidence in the Ray Rice domestic violence incident,” the New York Times reports.

The news comes just two days after graphic video surfaced, showing the running back knocking his fiancee unconscious.

The investigation will be overseen by John Mara, the co-owner of the Giants, and Art Rooney II of the Steelers, both of whom are lawyers.

Goodell said he plans to give Mueller full access to NFL records.

On Wednesday, the Associated Press reported that the video had been seen by NFL executives long before this week.

 

FBI Director Comey Pledges to Continue Fighting Terrorism As Bureau’s Top Priority

FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 On the eve of the 13th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2011, terrorist attacks, FBI Director James Comey pledged to continue fighting terrorism as the bureau’s top priority, the Arizona Republic reports.

“We made a promise to the American people 13 years ago … that we would do everything we can to make sure that there was never an attack on American soil anywhere near as horrific as that,” Comey said during a press conference at the agency’s Phoenix headquarters. “So we’re about that obligation, keeping that promise every single day.”

The visit was part of Comey’s pledge to stop by all 56 field offices.

Comey said the threat of terrorism remains high.

Terrorism organizations to be concerned about are in North Africa, the Horn of Africa, the Arabian Gulf and the Mediterranean.

“It’s especially worrisome in Syria, where you have thousands and thousands of foreign terrorists fighting with groups like ISIL,” Comey said, using an acronym for the Islamic State.

 

FBI Assists in Investigation of El Paso County Sheriff Accused of Sexual Misconduct

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa was considered a polished politicians and potential challenger to Gov. John Hickenlooper.

Now the FBI is helping the Colorado Bureau of Investigations conduct a problem into Maketa, who is accused of having sex with three women and then promoting them to top-paying jobs, the Denver Post reports.

“The FBI is assisting with the investigation at the request of the CBI,” CBI spokeswoman Susan Medina said.

Maketa declined to comment but his spokesman said the sheriff “supports these independent investigations. He really does.”