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Woman at FBI’s Philadelphia Office Claims Sexual Discrimination After She Was Demoted

Megan Lampinski is suing the FBI for sexual discrimination. Photo via Linked In.

Megan Lampinski is suing the FBI for sexual discrimination. Photo via Linked In.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A woman who previously headed the FBI Philadelphia office’s computer unit claimed Thursday that she was demoted and replaced with a male employee.

In a civil rights lawsuit, computer specialist Megan Lampinski was removed from her job as a supervisor the information technology division in 2008 because of sexual discrimination, Philly.com reports. 

“The government asserts she was a poor supervisor…. The evidence doesn’t back that up,” Lampinski’s attorney, Maurice R. Mitts, told a jury in the civil trial, noting glowing performance evaluations that Lampinski had received before she was demoted.

Lampinski, 52, was promoted to supervisor in the information technology unit in 2004. Then four years later, she said, she was given a nonsupervisory position in security screening, a job for which she had no experience.

The FBI asserts that Lampinski wasn’t performing well.

“There was no discrimination and no retaliation,” said government attorney Kelly A. Smith.

The trial continues Friday.

FBI One of Few Agencies to Benefit from Trump’s Proposed Budget

fbigunbadgeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is one of the few federal agencies that could benefit from President Trump’s proposed budget.

Under the budget proposal, Trump’s administration recommends a $61 million increase for the FBI and Justice Department to improve tracking terrorist communications and combat cybercriminals, FedScoop reports.

“The FBI would devote resources toward its world-class cadre of special agents and intelligence analysts, as well as invest $61 million more to fight terrorism and combat foreign intelligence and cyber threats and address public safety and national security risks that result from malicious actors’ use of encrypted products and services,” the budget blueprint states.

Trump’s proposed budget would increase the FBI’s overall funding by $249 million, or 3%.

LA Times: Arresting Immigrants at Hospitals, Schools, Courthouses Is Counterproductive

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

By Editorial Board
Los Angeles Times

A woman in El Paso showed up at a courthouse last month seeking protection from an abusive spouse. Instead, she was arrested by federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents and slated for deportation. In a Pasadena courthouse, a defendant was snatched from his attorney’s side and whisked away for deportation.

President Trump’s supporters may cheer on the ICE agents in these cases — after all, he won the White House in part by promising to crack down on illegal immigration. But as the government itself has recognized, it is both heartless and counterproductive to arrest people on immigration violations as they engage with the fundamentals of civic life: taking children to school (remember: children here illegally are entitled to attend public schools under the Supreme Court’s 1982 Plyler v. Doe ruling) or going to church or seeking treatment at a hospital. Under the Obama administration, ICE adopted a formal policy of avoiding arrests in such “sensitive locations.”

Courthouses, however, were wrongly excluded from the list of sensitive locations. On Thursday, the chief justice of the California Supreme Court, Tani Cantil-Sakauye, asked the government to keep ICE agents away from courthouses, which, she said, “should not be used as bait in the necessary enforcement of our country’s immigration laws.” The ACLU, noting countless cases around the country in which ICE has interrogated and arrested people as they sought to pay for traffic citations, appear for court hearings as witnesses, get married or obtain restraining orders in domestic violence cases, said the practice “obstructs the ability of immigrants to access the courts” and “endangers public safety.”

To read more click here. 

DEA Raids Target Group for Allegedly Exporting Colorado Marijuana

Photo by Steve Neavling.

Photo by Steve Neavling.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The DEA has raided more than a dozen locations in Colorado over an alleged scheme to ship marijuana out-of-state.

Although Colorado approved the recreational use of marijuana, an organization is accused of working with others to ship marijuana out of the state.

The DEA said it was assisting local authorities serve search warrants at 30 locations in Colorado on Thursday, U.S. News & World Report wrote. 

New Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ pledge to better enforce federal laws on marijuana had nothing to do with the raids, which were months in the making, a DEA spokesman said.

Man Who Told FBI of Plans to Kill President Obama Sentenced to Time Served

president obama state of unionBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Massachusetts man who told the FBI of plans to kill then-President Obama was sentenced to time served and five years of supervised release.

Masslive.com reports that Andrew O’Keefe was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Boston on Thursday to six months of time already served. 

In May 2o15, O’Keefe boldly contacted the FBI using an online anonymous tip page to say, “I’m planning to kill President Barack Obama, and I’ve got a really good plan.”

O’Keefe used his Social Security number to sign in to the tip line.

“Have the Secret Service give me a visit. I could use some company,” O’Keefe wrote in the post.

MassLive wrote:

O’Keefe apparently displayed signs of questionable mental health, telling authorities that he first needed to eat something so that he would have “enough energy” to survive being shot by police. He also apparently told them that words have no meaning and are “myths.”

Eventually, he peacefully surrendered to authorities and was taken into custody. 

During court proceedings, O’Keefe’s lawyer characterized him as “a bright … college graduate who seems to be experiencing some emotional problems.”

Previously, Secret Service Special Agent Fred F. Mitchell III had also stated that O’Keefe had “mental health issues” and noted that he had been previously charged with weapons offenses in state court. 

Other Stories of Interest

Trump Doubles Down on Wiretapping Claims Even As Republicans Express Doubt

Trump Tower

Trump Tower

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Although President Trump has provided no evidence that the Obama administration wiretapped his offices during the 2016 presidential campaign, he insisted again Wednesday that the claims are true.

On Monday, FBI Director James Comey is scheduled to testify before a congressional panel to discuss what evidence, if any, has been found to back up Trump’s claims.

“Wiretap covers a lot of different things,” Trump told Fox News Channel’s Tucker Carlson last night.

But even Republicans are getting frustrated with the unfounded claims, and leaders of the House Intelligence Committee said Wednesday that they have found no evidence to confirm President Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during the election.

“We don’t have any evidence that that took place,” said U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes, a California Republican and the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. “In fact, I don’t believe — in the last week … people we’ve talked to — I don’t think there was an actual tap of Trump Tower,” the Boston Herald reports

Secret Service Agents Investigated for Snapping Selfies with Trump’s Grandson

secret serviceBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Two Secret Service agents are under investigation for taking selfies with President Trump’s sleeping 8-year-old grandson last weekend.

The agents were driving Donald III to Manhattan from Westchester County, where Trump has an estate, Mother Jones reports.

Agents began taking selfies with Trump’s grandson when he fell asleep in the car.

The boy was “freaked out” by the selfies, a source told Mother Jones.

When he reached his destination, the boy told his mom what had happened, prompting an investigation.

“The US Secret Service is aware of a matter involving two of our agents and one of our protectees,” a Secret Service spokesman said. “Our Office of Professional Responsibility will always thoroughly review a matter to determine the facts and to ensure proper, long-standing protocols and procedures are followed. The Secret Service would caution individuals to not jump to conclusions that may grossly mischaracterize the matter.”

Border Patrol Rescues Man Who Tried to Jump from Bridge in Detroit

The McArthur Bridge on Belle Isle in Detroit.

The McArthur Bridge on Belle Isle in Detroit.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol agent rescued a man who attempted to commit suicide by jumping into the icy Detroit River from the McArthur Bridge on Belle Isle in Detroit.

The agent was patrolling when they saw what appeared to be a couple in need of help, WWJ reports. 

The agent saw the man push his wife aside before trying to climb the railing of the bridge.

The Border Patrol agent quickly grabbed the man, preventing him from jumping.

The man was pulled to safety.

“The courage of the men and women of the law enforcement profession was evident in every aspect of protecting our community Monday,” said Chief Patrol Agent Douglas Harrison, in statement. “The keen eye of the off duty Park Ranger noticing something out of place and quick response by the Border Patrol made for the best possible outcome in this situation.”

Other Stories of Interest