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News Story

3 Dozen TSA Employees Tested Positive for Coronavirus in 12 States

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The number of TSA employees who have tested positive for coronavirus has soared to 36 since the outbreak began two weeks ago.

Of those, 28 are TSA screening officers who have close interactions with the public. Another eight non-screening employees with limited interactions with the public have tested positive.

The positive cases are spread across 12 states: Washington, Nevada, California, Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Indiana, Virginia, Ohio, Michigan, New York and New Jersey.

Hundreds of TSA screeners and other employees also are quarantined because they either had contact with coworkers who tested positive or because they are showing symptoms.

At some airports, multiple TSA screeners have tested positive. There are six cases involving workers at John F. Kennedy International Airpot in New York and four at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey.

Three TSA screeners at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport in California were the first agency employees to test positive for coronavirus on March 10.

For details of each positive case, click here.

 

Via TSA

 

Secret Service Employee Tests Positive for Coronavirus

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A Secret Service employee has tested for coronavirus, the first reported case by the agency.

The employee has been quarantined, and the Secret Service “will continue to monitor the employee’s condition,” the agency said in a statement.

The employee’s identity was not disclosed.

The Secret Service said the employee did not have contact with co-workers for nearly three weeks.

The coronavirus has hit TSA agents hard. There are now 25 TSA screeners who have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the agency.

Rainer S. Drolshagen Named Special Agent in Charge of Minneapolis Field Office

Rainer Drolshagen, special agent in charge of the Minneapolis Field Office.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Rainer S. Drolshagen has been named special agent in charge of the Minneapolis Field Office.

Drolshagen, who recently served as a deputy assistant director in the Directorate of Intelligence at FBI headquarters, joined the bureau as a special agent in 1997. His first assignment was with the Johnson City Resident Agency under the Knoxville Field Office in Tennessee, where he investigated criminal and national security cases.

In the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Drolshagen led an evidence team investigating the crash of United Airlines Flight 93 in Pennsylvania.

In 2006, Drolshagen became supervisory special agent in the Military Liaison and Detainee Unit in the Counterterrorism Division at FBI headquarters. A year later, he was named the FBI’s representative to U.S. European Command in Stuttgart, Germany.

In 2009, Drolshagen landed at the Dallas Field Office, serving as the supervisor of the Safe Streets Task Force. He later created and led the Southwest Border Task Force to combat violent crime and money-laundering.

In 2014, Drolshagen was promoted to assistant special agent in charge of the Charlotte Field Office in North Carolina, where he oversaw the office’s intelligence program, administrative matters, and SWAT team. In 2016, he became chief of staff to the associate deputy director at headquarters.

In 2017, Drolshagen became the deputy assistant director of the Operational Programs Branch of the Criminal Justice Information Services Division.

In 2018, he began serving as deputy assistant director of the Intelligence Operations Branch in the Directorate of Intelligence, overseeing program management of the FBI’s human intelligence operations, intelligence-related information technology, threat review and prioritization, and the integration of intelligence across the FBI and U.S. intelligence community.

Before joining the FBI, Drolshagen served in the U.S. Marine Corps and served in Desert Storm. Drolshagen earned a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Clemson University.

The Department of Defense awarded Drolshagen the Superior Civilian Service Award in 2004 and 2009.

23 TSA Workers Tested Positive for Coronavirus in Airports in Seven States

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The number of TSA screeners infected with coronavirus reached at least 23 in seven states.

The TSA said the positive cases involve airports in New York, Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Ohio, New Jersey, California, and the Virgin Islands.

Many more TSA screeners are under quarantine.

At some airports, multiple TSA screeners have tested positive. There are five cases involving workers at John F. Kennedy International Airpot in New York and four at Orlando International Airport in Florida.

Three TSA screeners at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport in California were the first agency employees to test positive for coronavirus on March 10.

FBI Warns That Some White Supremacists Want to Weaponize Coronavirus Against Cops, Jews

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Some white supremacist groups are encouraging members to weaponize the coronavirus by spreading it to cops and Jews, the FBI has alerted local police.

These extremists are directing their followers who get infected with coronavirus to spread it by employing methods that include using spray bottles with their bodily fluids, according to the alert obtained by ABC News.

“Members of extremist groups are encouraging one another to spread the virus, if contracted, through bodily fluids and personal interactions,” according to the alert from the FBI’s New York office.

The FBI said white supremacists groups are asking members to spread the virus to Jews by going “any place they may be congregated, to include markets, political offices, businesses and places of worship.”

“Anti-government folks in America love to target law enforcement as a symbol of America’s authority,” Don Mihalek, the executive vice president of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association Foundation, tells ABC Newss. “It’s just sad that that’s their focus at a time of crisis in the nation.”

Some white supremacists groups have been blaming Jews for the coronavirus outbreak and the stay-at-home orders that are forcing nonessential businesses to shut down.

“From pushing the idea that Jews created the coronavirus virus to sell vaccines to encouraging infected followers to try to spread the illness to the Jewish community and law enforcement, as the coronavirus has spread, we have observed how white-supremacists, neo-Nazis and others have used this to drive their own conspiracy theories, spread disinformation and incite violence on their online platforms,” said Michael Masters, the head of Secure Communities Network, a group that coordinates security for Jewish organizations and synagogues nationwide.

“While the world faces a deadly pandemic, it’s a stark reminder that certain groups – notably the Jewish community and law enforcement – must also continue the battle against those who wish to hurt or kill them,” Masters continued. “As the economic situation remains fragile and civil society disrupted, the potential for the followers of hate to act becomes more likely … and more deadly.”

Weekend Series on Crime: The Texas-Mexican Mafia

CBP Seizes Fake Coronavirus Testing Kits at Chicago Airport

Fake coronavirus testing kits seized by CBP. Photo via CBP.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

CBP officers intercepted a package of fake coronavirus testing kits at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, the agency announced Thursday.

The packages, which came from the U.K, were found at the airport’s mail facility and included prohibited medical drug kits, concluding ones for COVID-19.

“On March 17, 2020, CBP officers intercepted shipments containing ‘Test Kits’ for various viruses and diseases to include COVID-19,” the agency said in a news release. “Not all the COVID-19 test kits were in each parcel, and there was generally just one COVID-19 test kit within groups of other alleged test kits for meningitis, IVF, MRSA, onion, apple, salmonella and others.”

Authorities turned over the packages to the FDA.

“The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) prohibits the introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce, or the causing thereof, of any food, drug, device, tobacco product, or cosmetic that is adulterated or misbranded,” the news release stated.

Number of TSA Screeners with Coronavirus Reaches 12, As Hundreds Opt to Stay Home

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The number of TSA screeners who have tested positive for the coronavirus has reached 12, the agency has confirmed.

The screeners work in airports in New York, Ohio, New Jersey, California, Florida and Georgia.

Another TSA employee who is not a screener and had limited contact with the public also tested for the coronavirus.

An undisclosed number of the those screeners’ coworkers will be quarantined for 14 days, the TSA said.

The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), which represents nearly 50,000 TSA officers nationwide, is calling on more protections for the screeners.

Fears of becoming infected with the coronavirus has prompted hundreds of screeners to skip work, raising concerns of staffing shortfalls. TSA Administrator David Pekoske gave TSA employees permission to use paid “weather and sick leave” if they decided to stay home, Government Executive reports.