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FBI Agent Became Addicted to Heroin After Dependence on Pain Meds

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An FBI agent accused of stealing heroin from evidence in cases to feed his addiction was first hooked on pain medication, The Washington Post reports.

Matthew Lowry, 33, of the Washington Field Office told investigators that he first took heroin in 2013 after stealing a small amount obtained during an undercover sting.

He said he became addicted to pain medication in 2012 for reasons that aren’t clear.

Lowry’s eventual dependence on heroin led him to steal heroin from suspects, authorities said in reports. The theft resulted in the dismissal of charges for 28 defendants because the evidence was deemed tainted.

Lowry has been suspended but not charged.

Former FBI Director Hoover Would Have Been Suspicious of Comey’s Speech on Race

FBI Director James Comey

By E.J. Dionne
Washington Post

Last week’s speech by FBI Director James Comey at Georgetown University was remarkable on its own terms, but revolutionary in the context of his agency’s history. You wonder if the late J. Edgar Hoover would have accused Comey of subversive intent.

“All of us in law enforcement must be honest enough to acknowledge that much of our history is not pretty,” Comey said. “At many points in American history, law enforcement enforced the status quo, a status quo that was often brutally unfair to disfavored groups.”

He explained why he keeps on his desk a copy of Attorney General Robert Kennedy’s approval of Hoover’s request to wiretap Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: “The entire application is five sentences long, it is without fact or substance, and is predicated on the naked assertion that there is ‘Communist influence in the racial situation.’” He calls agents’ attention to the document, he said, “to ensure that we remember our mistakes and that we learn from them.”

And who would think an FBI director would cite Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist, a song from the Broadway hit Avenue Q? His point: “Many people in our white-majority culture have unconscious racial biases and react differently to a white face than a black face.”

Yet Comey was unabashedly pro-cop. He fondly recalled his grandfather, William J. Comey, who rose to head the Yonkers, New York, police department. “Law enforcement is not the root cause of problems in our hardest-hit neighborhoods,” the FBI director said. “Police officers — people of enormous courage and integrity, in the main — are in those neighborhoods, risking their lives, to protect folks from offenders who are the product of problems that will not be solved by body cameras.”

To read more click here.

All 9 Former DEA Administrators Join Forces to Oppose Legalization of Pot in Colorado

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

All nine of the DEA’s former administrators signed an amicus brief that was filed Thursday in support of a Supreme Court petition challenging Colorado’s recreational marijuana laws, Politico reports.

The directors are siding with Oklahoma and Nebraska’s Supreme Court petition that challenges legalization.

The law in Colorado “gravely menace[s]…[t]he health, comfort and prosperity of the people” of neighboring states,” the former administrators write in their brief.

“The federal government made the choice in 1970 that a uniform, comprehensive, and consistent national approach to controlled substances was necessary,” the brief continues. “Principles of federalism, properly understood, therefore support the plaintiff States’ suit against Colorado.”

President Obama’s administration has urged federal law enforcement to respect state marijuana laws.

Other Stories of Interest

 

ACLU: Border Patrol Responsible for Chronic Inhumane Treatment of Immigrants

By ACLU Attorney James Lyall
Arizona Daily Star

For years, watchdog groups have issued report after report detailing the brutal conditions faced by children in Border Patrol custody. Since 2008, non-governmental aid organizations have documented at least 1,600 specific examples of children suffering abuse and inhumane environments in the Border Patrol’s detention facilities.

Border Patrol hold rooms are simply not designed for prolonged detention. There are no beds or showers, and detainees are denied recreation. Yet children, including infants and toddlers, are detained in these degrading conditions for days on end.

In June, the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona and partner organizations submitted a complaint to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on behalf of 116 unaccompanied immigrant children, alleging abuse and mistreatment in Border Patrol custody.

Many reported being denied blankets and bedding and being forced to sleep on the floors of unsanitary, overcrowded and frigid cells.

One quarter of these children reported physical abuse, and more than half reported various forms of verbal abuse. Roughly half of the children reported being denied medical care, including several who eventually required hospitalization. Eighty percent described inadequate provision of food and water, and nearly as many were detained by Border Patrol beyond the legally mandated 72-hour maximum.

To read more click here.

Other Stories of Interest

 

Justice Department Considering Suing Ferguson Over Racial Discrimination

Michael Brown

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department is prepared to sue the city of Ferguson, Mo., if city leaders balk at revising discriminatory police tactics, The Dallas Morning News reports.

Attorney General Eric Holder is expected to reveal the findings from two separate federal investigations into the police shooting of a black 18-year-old, Michael Brown.

Federal investigators are trying to determine whether police violated anyone’s civil rights.

While it’s unlikely that feds will charge the officer who pulled the trigger, the Justice Department is expected to allege that police targeted minorities during traffic stops.

“I think everybody will see when we announce our results that the process that we have engaged in is, as I said back at the time when I went to Ferguson, independent, thorough and based on all the facts,” Holder said Tuesday. “And I am confident that people will be satisfied with the results that will be announced.”

Google Says Surveillance Proposal Would Allow FBI to Spy on Anyone Worldwide

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Google is fighting attempts by the Justice Department to get permission for the FBI to search and seize digital data in what the search engine giant said would make it possible for the “hacking of any facility” in the world, The Guardian reports.

The Advisory Committee on Criminal Rules that is considering the proposal received a sharply worded letter from Google that warns the new FBI powers would raise “monumental and highly complex constitutional, legal and geopolitical concerns that should be left to Congress to decide.”

The proposed changes would allow the FBI to remotely search computers from anywhere in the world, “giving the US government unfettered global access to vast amounts of private information,” The Guardian wrote.

The Advisory Committee on Criminal Rules is a powerful body of mostly judges who have authority over federal rules governing the FBI.

Hate crime? FBI Asked to Investigate Stabbing Attack by Muslim in Metro Detroit

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

DETROIT — The FBI has been asked to investigate the assault of two men in suburban Detroit who were stabbed after saying they weren’t Muslim, The Washington Times reports.

Terrence Lavaron Thomas, a Muslim, was charged Tuesday with unlawful intent and possession of a controlled substance following the stabbing at a bus stop in Southfield, a suburb of Detroit.

Southfield Police are asking the FBI to determine whether a hate crime was committed.

“The victims in this case said that the suspect asked them if they were Muslim,” said Southfield Police Chief Eric Hawkins. “They responded that they were not, and then there was some back-and-forth between the victims and the suspect.”

Thomas is accused of stabbing one of them three times in the back. Another man who tried to intervene was stabbed in the hand.

Police said the trio did not know each other.

President Picks Interim Leader Joseph P. Clancy as Permanent Head of Secret Service

Joseph P. Clancy

 
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Joseph P. Clancy, the interim head of the Secret Service, is getting the nod from President Obama to become the permanent guy, the New York Times reports.

Clancy was the former head of the president’s detail.

Some critics of agency wanted an outsider to take over. Apparently, Obama thought differently.

A 27-year veteran of the Secret Service, Clancy was appointed Special Agent in Charge of the Presidential Protective Division on February 1, 2009.  He held that post until his retirement from the Secret Service on June 30, 2011.

To read the full story click here.