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Archive for November 18th, 2021

TSA Employees Under Siege by COVID-19 And Unruly Passengers

By Steve Neavling

The coronavirus pandemic has been tough on TSA employees. 

More than 11,140 TSA screening officers and other workers have tested positive for COVID-19 – more than any other federal agency – and 32 have died, according to the agency.

But the virus isn’t the only threat. 

Unruly passengers, many of them angry about mask mandates, have hit record levels. 

“The level of unruly behavior is much higher than I have ever seen it,” TSA Administrator David Pekoske said in an interview Wednesday with TODAY. “I will do everything I can, and I know my FAA colleagues will do everything they can, as well as our airline partners, to bring this number down.”

So far this year, the Federal Aviation Administration has investigated 973 cases involving unruly passengers, a significant increase from 183 investigations last year. 

Authorities are doubly concerned because the holiday season means far more travelers and stress. 

“I am very concerned about it, I know the FAA is very concerned about it, the carriers are concerned about it. And it’s something that we are doing our level best to address,” Pekoske said. “We’ve increased fines for unruly behavior, we are criminally prosecuting some cases, the FAA through the FBI.

2 Men Found Guilty in Malcolm X Killing to Be Exonerated Because FBI, Police Withheld Evidence

Malcolm X. Photo: Wikipedia

By Steve Neavling

Two of three men convicted in the 1965 killing of civil rights leader Malcolm X are expected to be exonerated after authorities said the FBI and police had withheld evidence in the case, The New York Times first reported.

District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. said a 22-month investigation revealed that law enforcement withheld evidence in the trial of Muhammad A. Aziz, 83, and Khalil Islam, who died in 2009. Both men have maintained their innocence from the beginning. 

“This points to the truth that law enforcement over history has often failed to live up to its responsibilities,” Mr. Vance said. “These men did not get the justice that they deserved.”

Thomas Hagan, who also was convicted in the murder, confessed to the killing during his trial but was adamant that the two other men were not involved. His conviction stands. 

Malcolm X was delivering a speech when he was fatally shot at New York’s Audubon Ballroom on Feb. 21, 1965.