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Archive for January, 2020

Border Patrol Celebrates Life of K-9 Killed During Shootout

5-year-old Belgian Malinois, Bulder.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Bulder wasn’t just any dog.

The Belgian Malinois was one of the best Border Patrol K-9s the agency ever had.

Bulder was killed last month during a shootout that occurred as agents tried to execute a search warrant at a home in El Paso.

“Patrol K-9 Bulder was one of the best canines we’ve ever had in our program. The proficiency that we saw from that dog is unrivaled from any other dog I’ve seen in my time and experience in the unit,” Kevin Vicini, BORTAC Team Leader in its K-9 section, said during a ceremony for the dog on Wednesday, KTSM9-TV reports.

The 62-year-old suspect who killed the dog out in a shootout was fatally shot with return fire.

2019 Was Record Year for Guns Confiscated at Airports by TSA

Guns seized at US airports, via TSA

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The TSA seized more firearms at airports in 2019 than any year in its 18-year-history.

TSA officers discovered 4,432 guns in carry-on and checked bags at checkpoints nationwide, a 5% increase over 2018, the TSA announced in a news release.

“The continued increase in the number of firearms that travelers bring to airport checkpoints is deeply troubling,” David Pekoske, the TSA’s administrator, said.

“There is a proper way to travel safely with a firearm. First and foremost, it should be unloaded. Then it should be packed in a hard-sided locked case, taken to the airline check-in counter to be declared, and checked.”

Hartfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) ranked first among the nation’s airports with 323 firearms confiscated. DFW International Airport came in second with 217 guns confiscated. Denver International Airport (DEN), George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH), and Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX) rounded off the top five.

All travelers, apart from law enforcement, are barred from bringing guns in airplanes, though firearms may be stored in checked luggage if all local, state and federal gun laws are followed.

Michael Flynn Wants to Withdraw His 2017 Guilty Plea in Mueller Probe

Former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

President Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn wants to withdraw his guilty plea to lying to the FBI during the special counsel investigation into Russian interference, his lawyers said in a court filing obtained by Reuters.

Flynn’s change of heart comes after federal prosecutors reversed course and called for up to six months in prison for Flynn, the only member of the Trump administration to plead guilty in the Robert Mueller probe.

The prosecutors called for the stiffer sentence after Flynn began arguing that prosecutors violated his rights.

Flynn pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to the FBI about interactions with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S.

Carla Provost, First Woman to Lead Border Patrol, Is Retiring

Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Carla Provost, the first woman to lead the U.S. Border Patrol and one of the longest serving members of President Trump’s administration, is about to step down.

The 50-year-old planned to retire in December but stayed on amid infighting over her replacement, The Washington Examiner first reported.

Provost, who began her career with the agency in 1995, became acting chief in April 2017 until the post was made permanent in August 2018. Her leadership came at one of the most contentious times for the Border Patrol, which continues to come under immense fire for its handling of families of undocumented immigrants.

Her replacement will be Rodney Scott, a 27-year agent who was serving as acting deputy chief since October.

FBI’s Terry Wade Named the Executive Assistant Director of the Criminal, Cyber, Response and Services Branch

Terry Wade

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Terry Wade has been named the executive assistant director of the Criminal, Cyber, Response and Services Branch at FBI headquarters. He’ll oversee  criminal and cyber investigations worldwide as well as international operations, critical incident responses, and victims assistance.

Wade, who has served as the assistant director of the Criminal Investigative Division, joined the FBI in 1996 and was first assigned to the Helena Resident Agency in Montana. He later transferred to the Oklahoma City Field Office, working violent crime, drugs cases, and white-collar crime, the FBI said in a press release.

In 2001, he was promoted to supervisory special agent in the Criminal Investigative Division at headquarters. In 2003, he headed west where he was named supervisory special agent of the Flagstaff Resident Agency of the Phoenix Field Office.

In 2007, he was promoted to assistant special agent in charge of counterterrorism, counterintelligence, cyber, and intelligence programs at the Albuquerque Field Office.

In late 2008, he began serving as deputy on-scene commander in Baghdad.  In 2013, he was promoted to section chief of the Employee Development and Selection Program in the Human Resources Division.  In 2014,  he was named the special agent in charge of the Criminal Division in Los Angeles and returned to headquarters the following

A short time later, he was name special agent in charge of the Albuquerque office.

A few years later,  he was named the assistant director of the Inspection Division at Headquarters.  He was appointed assistant director of the Criminal Investigative Division in 2019.

 

Off-Duty Secret Service Agent Shot Charging Dog in Brooklyn

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

An off-duty Secret Service agent fatally shot a dog that he says charged him in Brooklyn shortly before 10 p.m. Monday.

The New York Police Department is investigating.

“An off duty Secret Service employee was involved in the shooting of an unleashed dog in Brooklyn, NY this evening. As this is an ongoing NYPD investigation, the Secret Service will not have further comment,” the NYPD told The Daily Beast.

The dog appeared to be about 35 pounds, and its body was covered in a white sheet with what appeared to be a leash.

Ryan T. Young Promoted to Assistant Director of the Directorate of Intelligence at FBI HQ

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Ryan T. Young will serve as the assistant director of the Directorate of Intelligence at FBI headquarters in Washington D.C., the bureau announced Monday.

Young is leaving his position as special agent in charge of the Counterterrorism Division in the Los Angeles Field Office.

Young’s career as a special agent with the FBI began in 2001, when he was assigned to the Miami Field Office to handle counterintelligence matters. In 2007, he was promoted to supervisory special agent in charge of the Cuban Counterintelligence Squad before becoming the chief of internal policy in the Resources Planning Office at FBI headquarters in 2012.

In 2014, Mr. Young created the Syria-Iraq Task Force in the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division and led a 72-member inter-agency task force whose mission is to combat ISIS in Iraq and the Levant. In 2015, he became assistant special agent in charge of the Intelligence and Administrative branches in the Dallas Field Office.

In 2016, Young began serving as the section chief for the Directorate of Intelligence’s Strategic Technology Section, where he “was responsible for providing enterprise technology to operational entities addressing the FBI most challenging threats,” the bureau says. He also commanded a team embedded with the Defense Intelligence Agency’s National Media Exploitation Center.

In 2018, Young began serving as special agent in charge of the Counterterrorism Division of the Los Angeles Field Office, where he was in charge of the bureau’s second largest Joint Terrorism Task Force and weapons of mass destruction investigations in the Los Angeles region and in Southeast Asia. Young also took charge of all crisis management and response assets, which ranged from the SWAT Team and Evidence Response Team to bomb technicians and other programs.

Before joining the FBI, Young earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and a master’s degree in criminal administration and counseling from Western Oregon State University.

Young also served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force. In 2010, he was awarded the FBI Director’s Award for Outstanding Counterintelligence Investigation “for his work on the case of a Department of State employee and his wife who provided classified U.S. information to the Cuban government for 30 years,” the bureau says.

Lawsuit Challenging Conditions at Border Patrol Detention Centers Goes to Trial

A overcrowded, cold detention facility in Tucson.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A trial is set to begin today over conditions at detention centers at several of Border Patrol’s stations in Arizona.

The case involves a lawsuit filed in 2015 that challenges what attorneys say are unsafe and deplorable conditions at eight Border Patrol facilities in Arizona, The New York Times reports.

The lawsuit was filed four years before the surge in immigrants last year caused even bigger problems at the facilities, which activists say are inhume.

Photos used as evidence in the case show men packed under an aluminum blanket, rusty toilets, soiled toiled paper, and women changing a baby’s diaper on a concrete floor littered with trash.

“We’re talking about ensuring that the government is meeting constitutional standards when it comes to the detention of people in these facilities,” said Victoria López, advocacy and legal director for the ACLU of Arizona, one of the organizations involved in the suit.

Border Patrol didn’t respond to questions from The New York Times.