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Archive for June, 2016

Gun Store Owner Says He Alerted FBI to ‘very suspicious’ Orlando Nightclub Shooter

Omar Mateen

Omar Mateen

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A little more than a month before Omar Mateen opened fire on an Orland nightclub, the owner of a Florida gun store alerted the FBI to a “very suspicious man” who was trying to buy body armor and bulk ammunition, ABC News reports. 

That man turned out to be Mateen, said Robert Abell, co-owner of Lotus Gunworks in Jensen Beach, Fla.

According to Abell, Mateen tried to buy high-end body armor that was not available at the store. Mateen then called someone in a foreign language, hung up and inquired about bulk ammunition.

Abell said he turned Mateen away and called the local FBI office in West Palm Beach.

“We gave them information and everything that took place, and that was the end of the conversation,” he said, adding the FBI never visited the store or investigated further.

But the owner also never had Mateen’s name because he made no purchase, so they didn’t have a lot to go on.

New Legislation Aimed at Alerting FBI When Terror Suspect Tries to Buy Gun

Sen. Mark Kirk

Sen. Mark Kirk

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

New legislation is aimed at alerting the FBI when a terror suspect tries to buy a gun.

Republican Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois introduced the legislation in the wake of the Orlando nightclub massacre.

“Terrorists should not be able to buy weapons and the FBI should be notified if a suspected terrorist buys a weapon,” Kirk said in a statement, 5 NBC Chicago reports. “This commonsense legislation equips the FBI with a new tool to stop threats on American lives.”

The measure would require anyone who has been investigated for potential terrorism ties to be entered into the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

The FBI uses the NICS when it conducts background checks.

FBI Contradicts Trump’s Claims That Muslim Community Doesn’t Report Extremists

FBI Director James Comey

FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

If you believe Donald Trump, American Muslims tolerate extremists and fail to report them.

“They don’t report them,” Trump said in a CNN interview on Monday. “For some reason, the Muslim community does not report people like this.”

Not true, FBI Director James Comey said.

“They do not want people committing violence, either in their community or in the name of their faith, and so some of our most productive relationships are with people who see things and tell us things who happen to be Muslim.

“It’s at the heart of the FBI’s effectiveness to have good relationships with these folks,” Comey said at a press conference following the Orlando shootings.

The FBI described its relationship with Muslims as “robust,” contradicting Trump’s claims.

Justice Department Endorses Democrats’ Plan on Gun Control for Terrorism Suspects

gunsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department is backing the Democrats on a gun-control measure that would ban suspected terrorists from buying guns.

The gun-control amendment was introduced by Sen. Dianne Feintein, D-Calif.

The measure would allow the attorney general to ban gun sales to suspected terrorists if there’s “reasonable belief that the weapons would be used in connection with terrorism.”

“The amendment gives the Justice Department an important additional tool to prevent the sale of guns to suspected terrorists by licensed firearms dealers while ensuring protection of the department’s operational and investigative sensitivities,” Justice Department spokeswoman Dena Iverson said in a statement posted to the DOJ’s website. “We also continue to support universal background checks as a necessary tool to prevent suspected terrorists from lawfully obtaining firearms.”

Republicans defeated a similar proposal in December.

Other Stories of Interest

Federal Watchdog Criticizes FBI Over Handling of Facial Recognition Technology

FBI-facial-recognitionBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI was criticized by a federal watchdog for using a huge database of more than 411 million photos without disclosing the impact on public privacy.

The Government Accountability Office released a study on the database on Wednesday, saying the FBI did not obey disclosure requirements, the Guardian reports. 

The office is making the attorney general to determine why the FBI failed to make the disclosures.

The GAO also wants the FBI to conduct accuracy tests to determine ensure the software is working correctly.

The Privacy Act of 1974 requires law enforcement to disclose when they are using collecting personal information in a database. The GAO said the FBI failed to do that.

The FBI gets the photos from driver’s license and passport photos.

Orlando Night Club Shooter Reportedly Had No Other Targets

Omar Mateen

Omar Mateen

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Orland nightclub shooter where Omar Mateen killed 49 people and injured 53 others was his only target that day, the FBI said.

Federal investigators were following leads that Mateen also wanted to target Disney World, but law enforcement found no such evidence, the USA Today reports. 

The FBI has received help from the 29-year-old security guard’s wife, who reportedly told investigators that she tried to prevent Mateen from carrying out the attack at the gay club.

Now authorities are trying to determine whether the wife, Noor Salman, 30, knew enough about the attack to call authorities. If she did, she may face charges.

“Indeed, we don’t know what charges will be brought, or if charges will be brought,” Bentley said.

Homeland Security Issues New Terrorism Advisory Because of Homegrown Exremists

homeland2department-of-homeland-security-logo-300x300By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The threat of hometown extremism has prompted Homeland Security to issue a new terrorism advisory, Business Insider reports.

The bullet cautioned of “homegrown violent extremists who could strike with little or no notice.”

The bulletin follows the worst mass shooting in modern American history.

“The tragic events of Orlando several days ago reinforce this. Accordingly, increased public vigilance and awareness continue to be of utmost importance,” the bulletin said. “This bulletin has a five-month duration and will expire just before the holiday season. We will reassess the threats of terrorism at that time.”

The bulletin warns that homegrown terrorists pose an unpredictable danger to Americans.

It also expressed concern over “terrorist use of the Internet to inspire individuals to violence or join their ranks” and “threats and violence directed at particular communities and individuals across the country, based on perceived religion, ethnicity, nationality or sexual orientation.”

Active Shooter Incidents Rise to Record Levels in the U.S., FBI Records Show

gunBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Active shooter incidents are increasing at alarming levels, reaching the highest average of incidents over a two-year period.

New FBI data shows that 2014 and 2015 each had 20 active shooter incidents, which eclipses any two-year average in the past 16 years, ABC News reports. 

The FBI defines an active shooter situation as “an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area.”

“Unlike a defined crime, such as a murder or mass killing, the active aspect inherently implies that both law enforcement personnel and citizens have the potential to affect the outcome of the event based upon their responses,” the FBI said in a 2013 study of active shooter incidents.

Between 2014 and 2015, 92 people were killed and 139 wounded in active shooter incidents.