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President George W. Bush Paved Way for Weakened Secret Service

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The Secret Service’s ability to carry out its duties to protect the president was compromised by the expansion of duties in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the Washington Post reports.

That explains the recent string of embarrassing security lapses, the Post reported, citing interviews and government documents.

Under expansions approved by Congress and President George W. Bush, the agency began stretching responsibilities to include more monitoring of large sporting events and other big gatherings. The agency also took charge of tracking cyberthreats against U.S., and around-the-clock protection was extended to more people.

Those responsibilities came even as the agency’s ranks were diminished by early retirements.

“We are not the Super Bowl team we once were,” Dan Emmett, a former Secret Service supervisor, said in a recent interview with The Washington Post.

Ogden Editorial: Secret Service Needs New Leader Who Won’t Tolerate Inefficiency

Ogden Newspapers
Editorial Board

Unless the Secret Service is shaken up at the very top, the agency charged with protecting the president and other top officials will not correct problems that threaten its mission, an investigation has concluded.

After scandal after scandal – including lapses in which the president was put at risk – a group of former government officials was asked to examine the Secret Service and propose solutions. Earlier this month, their report was released.

Reform will not occur unless a new director from outside the agency is placed in charge of the Secret Service, those who studied it emphasize. They referred to the agency as “insular.”

In other words, the Secret Service is a bureaucracy where inefficiency has become acceptable.

The outside director proposal certainly touches on the problem of insiders unwilling to rock the boat. But it does not go far enough.

Much of the federal bureaucracy has problems similar to those plaguing the Secret Service.

Sending someone from another agency there may merely replace someone knowledgeable about it with someone else who is not – but who has the same sort of “insular” mindset.

To read more click here.

Number of Weapons Seized at Airports This Year Increased 20% Over Last Year

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The number of weapons seized at airports this year have increased 20% over last year, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

TSA agents have confiscated 2,164 guns as of Christmas, which marks the seventh consecutive year of increases in the number of weapons seized.

So what’s the deal? Haven’t people been warned enough since Sept. 11, 2001, that they won’t be able to board a plane with a weapon?

It appears not, TSA officials said.

The agency launched a public-relations campaign last month to remind people during the holidays to leave their weapons at home.

Other Stories of Interest


Weekend Series on Crime History: Boxing and the Mafia

httpv://youtu.be/YYjg2p7k7Y0

At Least 7 Arrested for Threatening NYPD Police Following Shooting of 2 Officers

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Authorities have arrested at least seven people for allegedly threatening police after a man shot two NYPD officers in the head Saturday in retaliation for the recent deaths of black men at the hands of white cops, CNN reports.

Police have been encouraging the public to report all threats so law enforcement can assess the dangers. As a result, seven arrests were made.

“All threats against members of the NYPD are taken seriously and are investigated immediately to determine the credibility and origin of the information,” NYPD said in a statement.

One recent arrest included a 26-year-old who is accused of threatening officers while posting pictures of weapons on his Facebook page. He has been charged with making terroristic threats, CNN reported.

Another suspect, a 41-year-old man, was arrested after he allegedly called police to inquire whether the bullets had been removed from the dead officer’s head so “he could kill more cops.”

In a tweet Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio thanked the police department and the civilian who saw something and said something: “Thank you to the NYPD officers who today arrested a man who threatened to kill cops, and to the good samaritan who provided key information.”

Gambling Case Postponed While Judge Decides Wether FBI Overstepped Authority

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

A federal judge has postponed an illegal Internet gambling trial to determine whether FBI agents went beyond the law when they entered Las Vegas hotel suites without a warrant and obtained information from the computers of the suspects, the Associated Press reports.

The Jan. 12 trial date was vacated pending a ruling on the warrantless search.

U.S. Magistrate Juge Peggy Leen said she expects to decide soon whether the rights of Wei Seng Phua and his son Darren Kit Phua were violated.

Defense attorneys argued the case she be tossed out because agents had no right to pose as repairman to fix bogus Internet problems.

Wanted Felon Dies After Being Shot with Stun Gun by Border Patrol Agents

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

A 40-year-old man is dead after he was shot by a border inspector with a stun gun at the busy border crossing of San Diego and Tijuana, Mexico, the Associated Press reports.

Police said the incident happened after a man leaped over a counter and attacked an inspector while being escorted for questioning at the San Ysidro port of entry.

The man, who was a wanted felon, was trying to enter the U.S. on foot.

Four CPB officers also were injured and treated at a local hospital.

Authorities said they weren’t able to resuscitate the man, who was pronounced dead at the scene.

His identity has not yet been released.

Border Patrol Investigates Claims That Agent Was Kidnapped on Christmas by Mexican Cartel

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Border Patrol is investigating the reported kidnapping of one of its agents and has begun trying to account for all of its employees in the Rio Grand Valley area, according to several reports.

3KIII-TV reported that an agent may have been kidnapped by a Mexican cartel.

According to KRGV, the La Joya Police Department reported to the RGV sector that it received a report from Mexico that an agent had been kidnapped from the Rio Grand Valley area.

Details of the possible kidnapping remained murky this morning.

Other Stories of Interest