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Ex-Secret Service Agent Credited with Saving President Reagan’s Life Plans to Retire from Law Enforcement

Former Secret Service Agent Timothy McCarthy, via Orland PD.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Former Secret Service Agent Timothy McCarthy, who was shot in the chest while protecting President Reagan during an assassination attempt in 1981, is retiring from law enforcement.

The 71-year-old said he decided recently to retire from the Orland Park Police Department in Illinois, where he has served as police chief for 26 years and earned Chief of Police of the Year from the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police in 2016, The Chicago Tribune reports.

McCarthy, who has been the police chief since 1994, was credited with saving Reagan’s life while serving on the president’s Secret Service detail on March 30, 1981. Reagan, McCarthy and two others were shot by John Hinkley Jr.

McCarthy said he plans to retire on Aug. 1 to spend more time with his wife, three children and seven grandchildren.

“This has been absolutely a great run,” the 71-year-old McCarthy said. “Time catches up to you. Sometimes you have to turn to family, and it’s time.”

Matthew J. Hudak Named Chief Border Agent of Laredo Sector

Border Patrol Chief Matthew Hudak.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Matthew J. Hudak, who heads the Border Patrol in the Big Bend Sector, has been named chief Border patrol agent of the Laredo Sector.

Hudak, a 23-year veteran of the agency, will replace Chief Border Patrol Agent Felix Chavez, who plans to retire after serving 34 years with the agency, CBP announced Tuesday.

Hudak, who joined the Border Patrol in 1997, will oversee a 171-mile stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border and 1,800 agents and support staff. Laredo previously served as acting deputy chief patrol agent at the Laredo Sector.

In March 2019, Hudak became head of the Big Bend Sector.

“I would like to thank our neighbors throughout the Big Bend region for their continued support of our agents and the work they do to keep our communities and country safe,” Hudak told KRQE.

“It has been an honor to serve alongside our agents and staff. Every day they have impressed me with their dedication and vigilance.”

Hudak will begin his new assignment on July 5.

FBI Arrests 4 Toledo City Councilmen, Attorney in Sweeping Bribery Scandal

Photo via FBI.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The FBI arrested four Toledo City Council members who are accused of public corruption and accepting kickbacks in exchange for favorable votes.

The bribery charges against Democrats Tyrone Riley, Yvonne Harper, Larry Sykes, and Garrick “Gary” Johnson carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. Harper also was charged with interstate communications with intent to extort.

The council members were arrested without incident early Tuesday.

A private Toledo attorney, Keith Mitchell, is accused of soliciting and funneling bribes to Harper and has been charged with bribery and extortion. The FBI is “actively seeking the whereabouts of Keith Mitchell,” FBI Special Agent Eric Smith said during a news conference, The Toledo Blade reports.

Smith said the council members committed a “fundamental breach” of their public oath.
The scandal involves nearly $35,000 in bribes.

“The residents of Toledo should know, as should every other resident of the Northern District of Ohio, that where there are allegations of public corruption and kickbacks, we and our federal partners will be there every time,” U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman said in a statement.

The council has 12 members.

“I am shocked and heartbroken by today’s arrests,” Toledo Wade Kapszukiewicz said in a written statement. “This is a terrible day for Toledo — and for everyone who believes in the good that can be accomplished through public service.”

Golden State Killer Pleads Guilty to String of Murders, Kidappings

FBI wanted poster.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Former police officer Joseph James DeAngelo Jr. affirmed he is the Golden State Killer by pleading guilty Monday to 13 counts of first-degree murder and 13 counts of kidnapping.

The 74-year-old, who sat in a wheel chair and wore an orange jump suit and plastic face shield, admitted he committed a string of murders in the 1970s and ’80s that terrorized California and frustrated law enforcement.

“Mr. DeAngelo is acknowledging his guilt for the heinous crimes he has committed,” Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton said at the court hearing, NPR reports. “There is really nothing that could give full justice because he has committed horrendous acts and murder up and down the state of California. But at least we can now begin the process — after decades — to bring some closure to families.”

In June 2016, the FBI renewed its manhunt for the elusive killer during a news conference, where they announced a $50,000 reward. Less than two years later, DeAngelo was arrested, based on forensic genetic genealogy.

“The scope of Joseph DeAngelo’s crimes is simply staggering,” Sacramento County Prosecutor Thien Ho said. “Each time he escaped, slipping away silently into the night.”

Family members of some of the victims spoke.

Teens Lead Petition Drive to Strip William Barr of Award from Former High School

Attorney General William Barr, via DOJ.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Two teenagers are leading a petition drive to strip Attorney General William Barr of a “Distinguished Achievement” award he received from his former high school at Horace Mann in 2011.

Barr graduated from the elite private school in 1967.

Recent graduates of the school, Jessica Rosberger and Kiara Royer, said they launched the Change.org petition because of Barr’s role in ordering riot police to clear out peaceful protesters from Lafayette Square so President Trump could pose for a photo op in front of a historic church.

“I realized that Barr had taken these heinous actions,” Rosberger tells Forbes. “At the same time he was held up as a model member of our community. That was very troubling to me.”

The petition states, “Barr violated our school’s Core Values of Mutual Respect and Mature Behavior as well as our Mission Statement by infringing on the common good. William Barr should not be held as a model member of our community because of his disgraceful actions.”

The petition urges school administrators to reconsider the award in light of “this inappropriate use of power.”

Professors and faculty at another of Barr’s alma mater’s, George Washington University Law School, are calling on the attorney general to resign because he “undermined the rule of law, breached constitutional norms, and damaged the integrity and traditional independence of his office and of the Department of Justice.”

TSA Employees Continue to Face Serious Coronavirus Risks at Nation’s Airports

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

No federal agency has been more impacted by the coronavirus than the TSA.

As of Monday, 780 TSA employees have tested positive for COVID-19 and five have died.

Now that coronavirus cases are increasing in at least 36 states, the TSA is trying to provide more training and protective gear to prevent the spread of the coronavirus to airport employees and travelers.

Jay Brainard, the top TSA official in Kansas, has reported that supervisors were prevented from providing screeners with stockpiled N95 masks in March, when it was difficult to buy the respirators. He also said the TSA failed to adequately train employees to deal with the coronavirus.

It’s a difficult job because security requires person-to-person contact, and that’s how the virus spreads.

Congress is asking for more information on the safety protocols to keep employee safe. In a June 16 letter to Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf, Rep. Bennie Thompson, chairman of the Homeland Security, called on more effective protocols.

“Given that COVID-19 disproportionately affects certain demographics, any such protocols must be designed to guard against passengers from certain racial or ethnic minorities being targeted for screening in a discriminatory fashion,” Thompson wrote.

Car Crash That Killed 7 People in El Paso Was Involved in Human Smuggling

Border marker at San Ysidro Port of Entry, via Border Patrol.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The car crash that killed seven people in downtown El Paso on Thursday was involved in human smuggling.

The car was fleeing Border Patrol agents when it crashed into a trailer at 2:15 a.m.

Among those killed were at least three undocumented immigrants who were being smuggled into the U.S. and four El Paso residents, including the 18-year-old driver The Daily Mail reports.

A Mexican man and two unidentified people also were killed.

Among the injured were Mexico native Omar Garcia Hernandez, 18, Guatemalan national Wilbur Gomez, 25, and an unnamed 16-year-old from Mexico.

“All preliminary information collected thus far indicates that it was indeed a human smuggling event,” Chief Patrol Agent of the El Paso Sector Gloria Chavez said in a statement.

A sensor alerted agents to the four-door sedan in Sunland Park, New Mexico, an area near the border that is know for human smuggling.

The driver fled by accelerating at a high rate of speed. Agents called off the chase because of the dangerous speed.

Soon after, the agents spotted the car, which had crashed into a trailer on private property.

“I cannot stress enough how Transnational Criminal Organizations continue to exploit human beings and manipulate the youth in our communities by recruiting them to be their mules and their smugglers,” Chavez said.

“Human smuggling is as lucrative as drug smuggling, if not more, and our youth are being targeted.”

Weekend Series on Crime History: Spiro Agnew Resigns