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Archive for July, 2016

FBI Director James Comey Defends Clinton Decision, But Said She Repeatedly Lied

FBI Director James Comey

FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

FBI Director James Comey defended the bureau’s decision not to recommend charges against Hillary Clinton during a House oversight committee hearing.

But Comey also provided new details that contradict what Clinton has made about her private email systems, the New York Times reports.

For example, Comey said Clinton failed to disclose “thousands” of work-related emails to the State Department, despite indicating otherwise. She also was “negligent”  by mishandling classified material whiles she was secretary of state, Comey said.

Nevertheless, Comey said there wasn’t clear evidence that Clinton intended to break the law.

Lawmakers Admonish TSA for ‘Bloated Bureaucracy,’ Failing to Discipline Wrongdoers

airport scanner 2By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The TSA received a scolding from lawmakers during a House subcommittee Thursday.

Chairman of the committee, Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa.,, said the TSA is a “bloated bureaucracy” that tolerates “corrupt, insolent” airport security.

“Every American should be outraged by these allegations,” Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa., said at a Capitol Hill hearing on the TSA. “Egregious misconduct occurs on all levels of the TSA and is growing.”

Perry said misconduct by TSA employees grew by 29% between 2013 and 2015.

The hearing follows a report by the House Homeland Security Committee that concluded “employee misconduct of all types corrupts TSA’s core mission to protect the traveling public and poses serious security vulnerabilities.”

“Half of TSA’s [almost 60,000] workforce allegedly committed misconduct from 2013-2015,” Perry said, citing data from the report. “Almost half of that number did so repeatedly.”

Ex-CIA Director Petraeus Hid Materials in Insulation as FBI Investigated Him

Former CIA Director David Petraeus

Former CIA Director David Petraeus

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

While under investigation by the FBI, former CIA Director David Petraeus hid materials in insulation in his attic, the bureau’s director James Comey said Thursday.

Comey made the statement to say that the investigation of Petraeus was different than the one into Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified information, Fox News reports. 

Petraeus pleaded guilty last year to sharing classified information with his biographer, with whom he had a sexual relationship.

“The Petraeus case, to my mind, illustrates perfectly the kind of cases the Department of Justice is willing to prosecute. Even there, they prosecuted him for a misdemeanor,” Comey told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

“In that case, you had vast quantities of highly classified information … not only shared with someone without authority to have it, but we found it in a search warrant hidden under the insulation in his attic and then he lied to us about it during the investigation,” Comey said.

“So you have obstruction of justice, you have intentional misconduct and a vast quantity of information. He admitted he knew that was the wrong thing to do. That is a perfect illustration of the kind of cases that get prosecuted. In my mind, it illustrates importantly the distinction to this case.”

FBI Assists Investigation of 11 Police Officers Shot at Rally in Dallas

Dallas police departmentBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is helping investigate the shooting of 11 people officers during an anti-violence rally in Dallas on Thursday evening.

President Obama described the attacks as “a vicious, calculated and despicable attack on law enforcement,” CNN reports. 

“There is no possible justification for these kinds of attacks or any violence against law enforcement,” Obama said, speaking from the NATO summit in Poland that he is attending. “Anyone involved in the senseless murders will be held fully accountable. Justice will be done.”

The shootings left five officers dead.

Obama said he would comment further once the killers’ “twisted motivations” were known.

Other Stories of Interest

Legal Ethics Professor Blasts Comey, Calls Email Press Conference ‘Out of Line’

Professor Stephen Gillers

Professor Stephen Gillers

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A professor of legal ethics at N.Y.U. School of Law blasted FBI Director James B. Comey for holding a press conference on Tuesday and delivering “his verdict on Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server.”

In a letter to editor at the New York Times on Thursday, Professor Stephen Gillers wrote that the press conference was “was out of line.”

He went on to write: 

The F.B.I. is neither judge nor jury. And it certainly has no business characterizing the noncriminal conduct of subjects of investigation, as Mr. Comey did. Cops, even top cops, should not play this role.

While it may gratify the country to hear Mr. Comey’s independent views on the server controversy, his press briefing sets a bad precedent that can harm the fair administration of justice. Few people under investigation have the resources Mrs. Clinton has to defend herself.

True, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said she would accept the recommendation of Mr. Comey and career prosecutors, but that was not a license for the director to go public. Furthermore, even if Ms. Lynch had given Mr. Comey the sole authority to decide whether to indict Mrs. Clinton, that’s all he should have decided.

Once a decision is made not to indict, a prosecuting agency should say nothing more. Its job is to prosecute crime, and if there is no crime, it should remain silent.

 

DEA Not Surprised After 17 Heroin Overdoses in Akron, Ohio in 24 Hours

800px-HeroinBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Heroin continues to claim lives at unprecedented rates.

In the city of Akron, Ohio, 17 people overdosed on heroin, and one died, in a 24-hour period, WWJ reports.

Special Agent Rich Isaacson, of the DEA’s Detroit field division, said the trend is startling.

“It’s a huge problem in Akron, Ohio but it’s also a huge problem across the United States,” said Issacson. “There is not a community in southeast Michigan that hasn’t been hit hard by the opiate abuse problems, that’s including pain killers, like hydrcodone and oxycodone products as well as heroin.”

Isaacson said news of deaths don’t usually stop users.

“On occasion when there’s talk of heroin overdose deaths – or a series of heroin overdose deaths; sometimes as counter-intuitive as it sounds – that actually sounds attractive to a heroin addict because they know that if that heroin caused the death of another user, that must have been pretty strong heroin,” Issacson said.

The heroin epidemic is being blamed on the ubiquity of pain medicine.

Other Stories of Interest

FBI Background Checks Surge in June After Mass Shooting in Orlando

gunBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Americans are buying more guns in the immediate aftermath of mass shootings.

Following the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, gun sale surged in June, CNN reports. 

The FBI conducted more than 2.1 million background checks in June 2016. By comparison, the FBI conducted 1.5 million background checks in June 2015.

The FBI is on track to eclipse last year’s record for background checks.

In the first half of this year, the FBI conducted 13.8 million background checks, compared to 23.1 million for all of last year.

FBI’s Reputation Continues to Crumble with Clinton Probe: Glenn Reynolds

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton

By Glenn Harlan Reynolds
USA Today

“I’d rather have a sister in a whorehouse than a brother in the FBI.” That quote from Alabama Securities Commissioner Thomas Krebs appeared on the front page of The Wall Street Journal in 1980, referencing the feds’ unwillingness to go after financial criminals. But it’s a sentiment that could be shared by a lot of people given the FBI’s recent record.

Bureau Director James Comey’s news conference, in which he laid out an extended record of misconduct by Hillary Clinton but then announced that he wouldn’t recommend prosecuting her, was just the latest in a series of very visible FBI failures.

The FBI had interviewed Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev, after being warned by the Russian government that he was a threat, but still did nothing. Three people were killed and more than 260 were injured as a result. The FBI also investigated in advance but failed to prevent mass killings by Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hasan and Arkansas shooter Carlos Bledsoe.

The FBI made a “mistake” in the background check for mass shooter Dylann Roof, Comey has said. Roof should have been prevented from buying the .45-caliber weapon used in Charleston, S.C., in what officials called a hate crime. The political repercussions of the massacre at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church led South Carolina to remove the Confederate battle flag from its statehouse grounds last year. Said Comey, “The thought that an error on our part is connected to this guy’s purchase of a gun that he used to slaughter these good people is very painful to us.”

It was also painful to the families of the nine people who were killed.

To read more click here.