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Donald Trump’s Call for Spying on U.S. Muslims Recalls Darker Times in FBI

Donald Trump, via Twitter

Donald Trump, via Twitter

By Juan Cole
Truthdig.com

As Donald Trump supporters beat a ‘Black Lives Matter’ protester at his rally in Birmingham, Ala., Trump himself reminded us of the dark days when a paranoid J. Edgar Hoover had the FBI monitor the Rev. Martin Luther King and black Churches of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

Trump said in Birmingham, “I want surveillance of certain mosques . . . We’ve had it before, we’ll have it again. … We have a situation where ISIS has raised its ugly head again and we have to chop off that head like they’re chopping off heads.”  He also said he would send Syrian refugees back to Syria if he were elected.  Many Syrian refugees have fled because they would be killed in their homeland.

The African-American protester was beaten, kicked and pulled down, with 8 or 9 people on top of him, as he was called a “monkey” and the N-word.  You wonder if they were wearing brown shirts. The Trump campaign later said it did not condone the behavior, but we haven’t heard Trump himself publicly denounce it. During the altercation, Trump said from the podium, “Yeah, you can get him out. Yeah, get him out. Get him the hell out of here.”

Trump’s desire to spy on American congregations recalls Cointelpro and other domestic surveillance programs of the 1960s that led to massive abuses and in some ways led to Watergate under Nixon.

To read more click here. 

Son of Illegal Immigrants Became a Border Patrol Official to ‘Humanize’ Experience

border patrol 3By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Oscar Hagelsieb has a unique perspective of life on both sides of the U.S.-Mexican border.

A child of illegal immigrants, Hagelsieb became a Border Patrol official, a position that seemingly put him at odds with his father, who crossed the border several times.

Before taking the job, he talked to his father.

“My dad’s my biggest hero and I didn’t want to disappoint him or offend him. He had crossed illegally several times and I didn’t know what his opinion was of border control,” Hagelsieb tells Quartz. “My parents didn’t want better lives for themselves—for them it would have been more convenient for them to stay in Mexico with their home and family—but for their children, for us.”

To Hagelsieb’s surprise, his dad encouraged him to pursue his dreams of protecting the border.

“He said that the border patrol and federal law enforcement needed individuals like me to humanize the experience,”  Hagelsieb said of his father.

Hagelsieb’s unlikely story is featured in a recently released documentary, “Kingdom of Shadows.”

Hagelsieb began working as a border patrol agent in Fabens, Texas in 2000, which meant he had to stop people like his parents, who eventually legalized their immigration status.

Hagelsieb shied away from the debate over U.S. immigration laws.

I have no opinion one way or the other,” he says. “As a federal agent, I uphold the laws that lawmakers pass.”

Los Angeles Times: Border Patrol Needs to Move More Quickly with Body Cameras

Border Patrol

By Editorial Board
Los Angeles Times 

To assure the public of their commitment to transparency and accountability, many law enforcement agencies across the country have embraced body-worn cameras with admirable rapidity. However, the nation’s largest law enforcement agency, the U.S. Border Patrol, is moving so slowly to adopt this new technology that it appears not to be moving at all.

In August, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection working group completed a yearlong feasibility study of body cameras at the request of Commissioner Gil Kerlikowske. The group did an adequate job of outlining the pitfalls of having Border Patrol agents wear cameras (resistance by the officers, privacy concerns and cost, among other things) and the benefits (decreased use-of-force incidents, better record-keeping and improved safety of officers).

No surprises there. Police agencies made similar cost-benefit analyses as they prepared to roll out their programs. And while tricky, none of the policy challenges has proved insurmountable. Meanwhile, studies over the past year have found that when police wear body cameras and record video of interactions with suspects, it really does influence the behavior of officers and suspects alike, and dramatically reduces use-of-force incidents.

This made Kerlikowske’s announcement last week that even more review of body cameras was still necessary all the more suspect. Was this just a stalling tactic by a department not committed to transparency?

To read more click here.  

Other Stories of Interest

Weekend Series on Crime: Afghanistan and the Opium Trade

FBI Director: Terrorism Attacks in Paris Have No Links to U.S.

FBI Director James Comey

FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Paris attacks that killed 129 people and wounded hundreds of others had “no connection at all” to the U.S., FBI Director James Comey said Thursday.

Speaking at a briefing with Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Comey dismissed any notion that that U.S. is the target of any specific or credible attacks, the USA Today reports.

Still, he emphasized, the FBI stepped up surveillance of dozens of potential suspects who could launch an attack.

Lynch added that the U.S. won’t be intimidated by terrorists.

“We will not let our actions be overtaken by fear,” Lynch said, referring to ISIS operatives as “merchants of violence.”

“They want us to live in fear, and we refuse,” the attorney general said.

FBI: Suspect in Theft of Military Weapons Is an Accused Child Rapist

us-army-logoBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI believed it has solved the theft of more than a dozen military weapons from a Massachusetts armory, Inside Edition reports. 

The suspect is a former Army reservist accused of child rape and who was wearing a monitoring bracelet at the time of the theft.

Jams Walker Morales was arrested Wednesday by the FBI and Nassau County Police.

He is accused of stealing 16 weapons, including rifles and pistols, from the Lincoln Stoddard Army Reserve Center in Worcester.

Authorities believe Morales used a power saw and pry bar to breach a metal and rood ceiling to reach a gun vault.

Secret Service Officer Accused of Soliciting Sex from Minor Suspected of Texting Others

Lee Robert Monroe

Lee Robert Monroe

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Secret Service officer accused of sending lewd photos to a Delaware State Police detective whom he believed was a minor is suspected of texting at least 10 minors, The Delaware News Journal reports.  

The new allegations are likely to make it more difficult for Lee Robert Monroe, 37, to get released from jail pending his trial.

Monroe is accused of soliciting sex online in the Delaware State Police case.

But authorities believe that may only be the beginning after allegations surfaced that he texted other minors.

Ex-Border Patrol Agent Who Fatally Shot Wife’s Lover Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison

Adam Garibay

Adam Garibay

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former Border Patrol agent who fatally shot his wife’s lover was sentenced to 30 years in prison, ABC13 reports.

The sentence was the maximum allowed under a plea agreement with prosecutors in the killing of Keith J. Martin.

Adam S. Garibay, who pleaded guilty to the Nov. 9 murder, will have to serve at least 15 years before he is eligible for parole.

Prosecutors said Garibay drove to the Corpus Christi home of wife, who was restrained with handcuffs and duct tape. He then drove to a house near Hondo, where Martin was killed.