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Secret Service Continues to Pay Ousted Deputy Director After Leadership Changes

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Members of Congress are finding little reason to begin trusting the Secret Service again after a series of blunders and employee problems.

The House Oversight and Government Reform committee discovered this week that Alvin “A.T.” Smith, who was ousted as deputy director of the agency, is still paid by the Secret Service, The Washington Post reports.  

Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy testified that Smith, a 29-year veteran of the agency, is still being paid by Secret Service, even though he has been detailed within the Homeland Security to work with CBP.

“You have done, Mr. Clancy, a very good job of building trust and confidence, and it’s flushed down the toilet when I read and hear about these things. You said to us … that we’re implementing fundamental changes,” committee chairman Jason Chaffetz said. “Don’t ever come back here to Congress and tell me that you have a financial problem when you’ve got A.T. Smith on your payroll and you say you don’t have enough money. You shouldn’t have to pay for that out of your budget.”

The committee discovered another high-level agent who was forced out also is still on the payroll, working for ICE.

TSA Agent Charged with Faking Cancer for 5 Years to Get Out of Work

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A TSA agent has been charged with faking cancer for five years in an attempt to stay out of work, The Associated Press reports.

The former TSA agent, Marc Bess, was arrested after authorities said they discovered he was lying about having abdominal lymphoma.

In fact, he’s cancer-free, the AP reported.

Investigators said Bess forged doctor’s notes.

He’s being charged with embezzlement and stealing public money.

According to court records, Bess took 280 days in sick leave.

Other Stories of Interest


Joseph Piersante Becomes First DEA Agent to Receive Secretary of Defense Medal

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

DEA Agent Joseph Piersante, who was shot and wounded by enemy gun fire while on a counter-terrorism and narcotics mission in Afghanistan in 2011, became the first DEA agent to receive the Secretary of Defense Medal for the Defense of Freedom.

The The Defense of Freedom Medal is the civilian equivalent of the military’s Purple Heart, according to a DEA press release issued Thursday, on the day of the award.

The press release said:

 Piersante’s recovery from this life-threatening event has been nothing short of miraculous. Through hard work and determination, as well as incredible doctors, EMTs, team members, therapists, trainers, family, and friends along the way, he has returned to his Special Agent duties at DEA FAST headquarters in Virginia. In addition, Piersante has inspired many in and out of law enforcement, participating in speaking engagements, motivational opportunities, and training in areas such as overcoming adversity, never giving up, and putting your life on the line for the good of our great nation. His inspirational story will continue forever to be told not just by him, but by many in and out of DEA.

Horrifying 50 Minutes for Border Patrol Agent Who Drove into River

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Emergency responders rescued a Border Patrol agent whose car plunged into the St. Clair River in Michigan early Wednesday morning.

The Detroit Free Press reports that that agent was in the water for about 50 minutes, hanging onto the seawall near a water treatment plant in Algonac before he was rescued.

It wasn’t immediately clear how the unidentified agent and the Border Patrol vehicle ended up in the water.

The agent, who is assigned to the Marysville station, was patrolling when the accident happened.

The agent was treated and released from the hospital.

Singer of FBI-Obsessed ‘Louie Louie” dies at age of 71

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The song “Louie Louie,” was an obsession of the FBI’s in the 1960s.

In trying to determine whether the song violated the Federal Interstate Transportation Obscene Matter statues, the FBI spent two years analyzing the song and lyrics, resulting in a 455-page obscenity investigation.

The singer and songwriter, Jack Ely died Tuesday at the age of 71, WTOP.com reports.

Ely’s son told WTOP that his father got “quite a kick” out of the lengthy investigation, which helped make the song even more popular than it already was.

Check out the entire file here. http://vault.fbi.gov/louie-louie-the-song

FBI Helped Facilitate Ransom Exchange Between Americans, al Qaeda

 
By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI helped facilitate ransom payments to al Qaeda from the family of Warren Weinstein, an American who was kidnapped at gunpoint and held hostage for four years before being killed in a U.S. drone strike, CNN reports.

“Over the three and a half year period of Warren’s captivity, the family made every effort to engage with those holding him or those with the power to find and rescue him,” a spokesman for the family said in a statement on Wednesday.

According to source in a Wall Street Journal report, the agency “vetted a Pakistani middleman used by the family to transport the money and provided other intelligence to enable an exchange.”

Problem was, the money likely went into the wrong hands, the family said.

DEA Does Not Owe Company Money for Using Truck without Permission

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A judge has ruled that the DEA is not required to compensate a Texas trucking company for damaging a tractor trailer that the agency used during a wild 2011 sting without permission.

The Washington Post reports that the tractor trailer was riddled with bullets after the sting ended in the execution-style murder of the truck’s driver, an informant.

The ruling essentially prevents more information from being disclosed about the incident.

The owner of the trucking company also is worried that his business is in danger of being retaliated against by the drug cartel that encountered the truck.

Other Stories of Interest


FBI Releases Training Video on Notifying Family Members of Loved One’s Death

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

It’s one of the most difficult parts of the job – telling family members they’ve lost a loved one.

To better train law enforcement and first responders on handling the notification of family members of a death, the FBI joined up with Penn State University to create a no-cost website.

The idea was “to better equip law enforcement personnel, victim advocates, coroners, medical examiners, chaplains, hospital staff, and others who find themselves delivering death notifications to do so with professionalism, dignity, and compassion. Not only because it’s the right thing to do, but also because the way a death notification is made can have a significant impact on a family’s grieving process and on potential future prosecutions,” the FBI wrote in a press release.

The training, called “We Regret to Inform You …” is available at www.deathnotification.psu.edu.