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Utah Man Accused of Threatening to Blow Up FBI Office After Making 112 Calls

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Utah man really wanted the FBI’s attention.

Robert Zickella, 49, is accused of calling the FBI in St. George at least 112 times over several days, threatening agents and threatening to blow up the bureau’s office, the Salt Lake Tribune reports.

Zickella is being held in the Purgatory Correctional Facility on a $10,000 bond

What remains unclear is why Zickella threatened the FBI and hounded agents.

FBI Investigates String of Fake Ransom Calls Targeting Doctors with Daughters

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is joining Reno Police to investigate a string of fake ransom calls targeting doctors with daughters.

KTVN reports that someone has been calling doctors in the area, saying their daughter has been kidnapped and will be mutilated or killed if ransom wasn’t paid.

“That was the worst experience of my life,” said Dr. Louis Bonaldi, who received one of the calls at his office. “For somebody else to go through that, to have that feeling, I couldn’t work after that. I was an emotional basket case.”

The caller even placed a girl on the phone who sounded like his daughter.

Police began to get similar complaints from other Reno-area doctors.

“Today, the Reno office of the FBI, along with the Reno Police Department received several reports from some local physicians who had indicated they received a phone call,” said Special Agent Christopher Johnson of the FBI. “Looking into this matter, we were able to learn that all the daughters of these physicians are safe and accounted for.”

 

Former Indiana Police Chief Accused of Buying Weapons with Badge, Selling Them Privately

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former police chief in Indiana is accused of using his badge to buy police-issued guns and sell them privately, the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

The FBI and ATF are investigating, local police confirmed.

“We have been fully cooperating with federal agencies over the last month,” Acting Chief Tony Frencl said.

Police in early July leveled allegations against Police Chief Steven Sibbrell, saying he was responsible for a variety of misconduct, including watching pornography on his PD computer.

Other grievances included using foul language, conducing traffic stops in unmarked cars and sleeping in his office.

 

Homeland Security Wastes Up to $49 Million Annually on Vehicles It Underuses

The Department of Homeland Security spent up to $49 million on vehicles that were underused, according to a new report from the agency’s inspector general, according to Government Executive.

The audit by the DHS inspector general found that the agency lacks a system to properly maintain and track a fleet to avoid wasting money.

According to the report, Homeland Security has 56,000 automobiles, costing $534 million a year. That is the second largest fleet in the federal government.

The IG’s suggested the agency install a “single, central system of record” for the fleet.

DHS management agreed and pledged to implement the reforms by 2015.

National Guard Troops in Texas Fight Boredom, Not Illegal Immigration, So Far

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

National Guard troops continue to arrive in Texas on the orders of Gov. Rick Perry to help crackdown on the border crisis, but so far, there’s not much for them to do, the Washington Post reports.

The troops, who are wearing body armor and carrying pistols, were spotted fighting boredom as their role continues to confuse federal law enforcement.

“The music keeps me up,” said one soldier listening to R&B. “We’re keeping our eyes on the brush.”

So far, Border Patrol units have stood watch, usually watching over the river.

To date, about 400 of the anticipated 1,000 guardsman have arrived.

Other Stories of Interest

FBI Criminal Database Causes Big Problems Years Later for Some

1960s Activist to House FBI Files at University of Michigan

Patrolling Rio Grande: On Front Lines with Border Patrol

Did DEA Seize Bitcoins from Innocent Man in South Carolina

FBI Finds No Evidence That J.P. Morgan Breach Hit Other Big Banks


FBI Turns to Propaganda in Faux News Report to Pump Up Triumphs

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is promoting itself using a faux journalism report on the radio that is intended to sound like a real new agency, the Daily Signal reports.

One new cast begins, “In a move demonstrating the FBI’s valuable role of protecting national security, Director James Comey creates a separate Intelligence Branch…”

Instead of using a real news anchor, the FBI is using a public affairs specialist.

The program is called “FBI This Week” and is aired regularly on the radio.

“[T]he programs that we produce are ultimately designed to aid and assist the public in protecting itself against crime,” says Susan McKee, the FBI’s chief of investigative publicity and public affairs.

Border Patrol Agent Disciplined for Speaking with Media about Agency Concerns

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol agent has been disciplined for speaking to the media, the National Review reports.

By speaking to the media, Agent Ron Zermeno violated an “cease and desist” order to stop issuing statements that contain “Law Enforcement sensitive” information to the media.

Zermeno, who is the health and safety director of the National Border Patrol Council Local 1613, spoke out about the cease and desist.
CBP recommended that Zermeno be reprimanded for unauthorized disclosure and failure to follow instructions.

But Zermeno allegedly ignored the order about a month after the gag order.

“You willfully abandoned your responsibilities as a Border Patrol Agent and potentially placed several persons at risk,” the CBP wrote.

Others have defended Zermeno, including a staff member of ranking Republican Senator Tom Coburn.

“We’ve reviewed, and I’ve reviewed his comments, and I don’t think he has released anything that would violate law-enforcement sensitivities,” the staffer says. “I can’t see what he released that would have done any harm, but I’m willing to keep an open mind to that. I just don’t see it. I think he’s a good American who’s done the right thing.”

FBI Trained Alaskan Residents to Become Informants to FBI in Event of Invasion

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Fearing the Soviet Union was planning to attack Alaska in the 1950s, the FBI trained Alaskan residents so become informant behind enemy lines, according to declassified documents, reports RT.com.

The initiative did not include women or native people, like the Native Americans.

At the time, the FBI feared that the Soviet would invade by plane and or drop paratroopers on more populated areas in Alaska.

The initiative to train citizens to provide intelligence was a highly classified project, code-named “Washtub.”

The FBI didn’t trust the native population .

“Eskimo, Indian and Aleut groups in the Territory should be avoided in view of their propensities to drink to excess and their fundamental indifference to constituted governments and political philosophies. It is pointed out that their prime concern is with survival and their allegiance would easily shift to any power in control,” insisted the founders of the program.