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Off-Duty Border Patrol Agent Severely Beaten in New Mexico

border patrolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A motorist found an off-duty Border Patrol agent on the side of the road in New Mexico on Friday night, severely beaten and left for dead.

The agent, who was assigned to the Deming Border Patrol Station in New Mexico, sustained serious injuries to his head, chest and hands, according to a CBP news release. He was found about 11 p.m. in Dona Ana County, west of Las Cruces.

The agent, whose name has not been released, was rushed to a nearby hospital and was in stable condition.

The FBI, Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office and the El Paso Police Department are helping investigate.

Another off-duty Border Patrol agent was stabbed in the eye in the El Paso Sector on May 20.

“CBP has informed its workforce of this report and has reminded its law enforcement personnel to be alert and aware of their surroundings and potential threats related to their service,” CBP said in the news release.

ICE Detains Dozens of Chaldeans in Metro Detroit, Leading to Standoff with Protesters

ice-badgeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

ICE agents arrested dozens of Chaldeans in metro Detroit on Sunday, leading to a standoff with protesters.

Witnesses and immigration advocates said roughly 40 Chaldeans Christians, most of whom have a criminal record, were detained.

If they are sent back to Iraq, it “is like a death sentence,” Martin Manna, an Iraqi-American Christian advocate who is president of the Chaldean Community Foundation based in Sterling Heights, told the Detroit Free Press.  

On Sunday night, dozens of protesters briefly blocked the bus where the detainees were placed.

Metro Detroit is home to the second largest Chaldean population in the U.S.

ICE declined to comment on specifics of the arrests.

“ICE regularly conducts targeted enforcement operations during which additional resources and personnel are dedicated to apprehending removable aliens,” spokesman Khaalid Walls said in a statement Sunday evening.

“The focus of these targeted enforcement operations is consistent with the routine, targeted arrests carried out by ICE’s Fugitive Operations Teams on a daily basis.”

Trump’s Friend, Business Partner Among Finalists to Build New FBI HQ

The FBI's current headquarters in Washington D.C.

The FBI’s current headquarters in Washington D.C.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A longtime friend and business partner of Donald Trump and his family is one of three finalists to build a new FBI headquarters and campus, raising serious ethical questions.

“It creates a huge conflict,” Rep. Gerald Connolly, a Virginia Democrat who sits on the House Oversight Committee, told ABC News. “It’s an enormous project. The exposure here for the Trump administration is very real.”

The company in question is Vornado Realty Trust, a New York real estate firm whose founder and chairman is Steven Roth, a family friend, business partner and occasional adviser to Trump.

In fact, Trump gave Roth a key role in the president’s infrastructure advisory council and recently introduced Roth to a crowd in Cincinnati as one of “the greatest builders in America.”

ABC News reported:

Through business partnerships with both the Trump Organization and the Kushner Company, Roth’s firm has a level of financial codependence with the First Family that Connolly said could spark intense debate over the Trump administration’s handling of potential conflicts.

Vornado and The Trump Organization are jointly invested in two buildings — one in Manhattan and another in San Francisco. Vornado is also in the midst of active negotiations with the Kushner Company about the future of a troubled investment by Kushner’s family in a New York City skyscraper at 666 Fifth Avenue, according to a Kushner Co. spokesman. The company came to the rescue of the Kushners when it agreed to an arrangement that gave Vornado 49.5 percent of the office portion of the New York tower, and 70 percent of the retail space.

Senate Committee to Grill AG Sessions on Involvement of Comey’s Firing

Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Photo by Gage Skidmore, via Wikipedia.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Photo by Gage Skidmore, via Wikipedia.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has agreed to testify Tuesday before the Senate Intelligence Committee, but the former Republican senator likely will answer questions behind closed doors.

Sessions is expected to be grilled over comments made by fired FBI Director James Comey, who told the same committee last week that President Trump pressured him to end an investigation into former national security advisor Michael Flynn.

Senators from both sides of the aisle also want to know why Sessions was involved Comey’s termination, especially since the attorney general came under fire for failing to disclose meetings with a Russian ambassador and because he recused himself from the Russian investigation, CBS News reports. 

Sessions was expected to testify about the DOJ budget before the Judiciary Committee, but he switched committees after it became clear that he would be questioned about his role in Comey’s firing.

Senators Call on President Trump to Testify about Russia, Comey’s Firing

President Trump, via White House

President Trump, via White House

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Senators from both sides of the aisle are calling on President Trump to testify under oath about the Russia investigation and alleged recordings of his conversations with then-FBI Director James Comey.

The senators’ request comes after Trump said he was “100%” willing to answer questions about alleged ties to Russia and the recordings that Trump alluded to in a tweet.

“I think we could work out a way it could be dignified, public, with questions, with Leader McConnell,” Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer told CBS.

Before Trump testifies, however, Schumer said he first would have to consult with special counsel Robert Mueller.

Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein and Republican Senator Susan Collins backed up Schumer’s calls for the president to testify.

When asked about the recordings last week, Trump responded that h would provide an answer “within a fairly short period of time.”

Other Stories of Interest

Weekend Series on Crime History: Nixon Defends Against Watergate Allegations

Secret Service Will Now Hire Agents with a History of Smoking Pot

marijuana-istockBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Secret Service is having trouble hiring agents, but it’s not because there aren’t enough applicants.

Turns out, the agency is forced to turn down a lot of applicants because of a policy that disqualified people who smoked marijuana in their past, the New York Daily News reports. 

Under the agency’s new policy, job candidates who smoked marijuana in the past aren’t automatically disqualified. The agency will now consider the length of time a person hasn’t smoked pot.

Applicants younger than 24, for example, are still eligible for a job if they had not smoked marijuana for a period of 12 months Candidates who are 28 or older must have refrained from smoking pot for at least five years.

Without the revamped policy, the Secret Service projects it wouldn’t be able to fill thousands of employees.

“We need more people. The mission has changed,” Secret Service Director Randolph Alles said, according to CNN. “It’s more dynamic and way more dangerous than it has been in years past.”

Suspected NSA Leaker Accused of Writing, ‘I Want to Burn the White House Down’

Suspected NSA leaker Reality Winner.

Suspected NSA leaker Reality Winner.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Suspected NSA leader Reality Leigh Winner is accused of writing in a journal, “I want to burn the White House down.”

Investigators found the journal insider her home in Georgia, the USA Today reports. 

A federal judge on Thursday ordered Winner held without bail after she was charged with leaking classified U.S. intelligence documents to the website Intercept.

Winner is accused of writing, “I want to burn the White House Down … find somewhere in Kurdistan to live. Ha-ha!” assistant U.S. attorney Jennifer Solari told a federal judge.

Winner, 25, is a former Air Force linguist.