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Lawmakers Consider Proposal to Require Lyft, Uber to Undergo FBI Background Checks

uberBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Some lawmakers are considering a proposal that would require drivers of ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft to undergo FBI background checks.

Taxi companies, which have been hit hard by the lower prices of Uber and Lyft, said they are subject to FBI background checks and so should drivers for ride-sharing services, the Las Vegas Sun reports. 

Supporters of the ride-sharing services say background checks are a nonstarter and intended to bump Uber and Lyft off the roads.

“There’s a lot of interest in the background check because of public safety,” said John Mowbray, a lawyer who represents Frias Transportation Management, which operates one of Las Vegas’ largest cab companies.

Left and Uber are not fans of FBI checks because they are costly and can months to process. The companies, instead, rely on commercial background checks.

Other Stories of Interest

New Report: Nearly Half of TSA Employees Accused of Misconduct

tsaBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Nearly half of all TSA employees have been accused of some form of misconduct between 2013 and 2015, according to a new report from the House Homeland Security Committee.

Among the complaints are sexual misconduct, bribery and failure to follow TSA procedures.

The number of complaints between 2013 and 2015 rose nearly 29%.

In an attempt to curtail misconduct, the Government Accountability Office recommended that the agency implement a better review process for allegations.

Other Stories of Interest

Hundreds of 911 Calls During Pulse Shooting Stay Private During FBI Probe

Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen.

Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Hundreds of 911 calls poured in during the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, but only the FBI can make those records public.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that the FBI has control of the 911 calls from the June 12 shooting.

Responding to dozens of requests for the phone calls, the Justice Department said the investigation is active and therefore should not yet be released.

Lawyers for news agencies claim there is a “strong public interest in fully evaluating how first responders and police reacted during the most critical phases of this incredible tragedy.”

The city o f Orlando has denied requests at the direction of the FBI.

Border Patrol Proposes Asking for Social Media Handle of Visitors in Visa Waiver Program

Facebook_logo-2By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The federal government has come under fire for a proposal to ask for the social media handles of people visiting the country under the visa waiver program.

Civil liberties advocates say the proposal goes too far, but counterterrorism experts counter it’s not far enough, NBC News reports. 

Border Patrol submitted the proposal to the Federal Register last month that would include a social media section to visa applications. Answering the question would be optional.

Counterterrorism experts are trying to learn more about people before they enter the country.

Man Convicted in Murder Plot of Judge, Prosecutors And FBI Agents

courtroomBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former Laguna Beach man who tried to arrange for the kidnapping and murder of a judge, two prosecutors and a pair of FBI agents was convicted Tuesday.

John Arthur Walthall, 60, was convicted of soliciting the murders after a judge earlier sentenced him to 14 years in prison for fraud, MyNewsLA.com reports.

Prosecutors said he wanted someone to kill U.S District Judge Andrew Guilford, two prosecutors and a pair of FBI agents who helped in the case.

Walthall is accused of spilling his plans to inmates and an undercover FBI agent.

ATF Sends About 20 Agents to Help Investigate Shooting of Kansas City Officer

USA_-_KANSAS_-_Kansas_City_police_departmentBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The ATF is helping police investigate the fatal shooting Tuesday of a Kansas City, Kansas, officer.

Police said 46-year-old Capt. Robert Melton was gunned down while investigating report of a drive-by shooting, the Imperial Valley Press reports. 

The ATF has sent about 20 agents to the scene of the shooting. They will be on hand to provide help with ballistics and any other facets of the investigation.

A spokesman for the police department said it wasn’t clear whether the officers on the scene were ambushed.

“The investigation needs to play out before that can be determined,” he said.

Lawsuit: FBI Deliberately Uses Outdated System to Impede FOIA Requests

foiaBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A national security researcher is suing the FBI, alleging the bureau uses an antiquated system to deliberately impede requests under the Freedom of Information Act, IDG New Service reports. 

Ryan Shapiro, a Ph.D. candidate at MIT, claims in the lawsuit that the FBI has established “countless means” of impeding FOIA requests, including a reliance on a computer system “designed” to fail.

“When it comes to FOIA, the FBI is simply not operating in good faith,” Shapiro said via email. “Since the passage of the Freedom of Information Act, the FBI has viewed efforts to force bureau compliance with FOIA as a security threat.”

Shapiro said the FBI deliberately refuses to user newer search technologies.

FBI to Start Sending Thousands of Deleted Clinton Emails to State Department

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI on Friday will start sending “several thousand” deleted Hillary Clinton emails to the State Department.

Once in hand, the State Department will begin “rolling” out the e-mails to the public as part of a public-records lawsuit tied to Clinton’s use of a private email server, the Hill reports. 

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan appeared to be annoyed that the FBI was taking so long to transfer the emails.

“It seems to me they could figure out how to transfer [the emails] immediately upon request,” Sullivan said, suggesting that the FBI could just “push a button.”

The Justice Department responded that it takes time to create a format that makes  it possible to process and read the emails.