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Tag: Denver

TSA Officer Dies from COVID-19, Ninth Employee Killed by Coronavirus

TSA employee Eduard Faktorvich. Photo via TSA.

By Steve Neavling

The coronavirus claimed the life of a TSA officer at Denver International Airport.

Eduard Faktorvich, who joined the TSA in Denver in April 2018, worked exclusively at the security checkpoint. He died Monday, the TSA announced Tuesday. 

“His colleagues remember him as a kind and respectful person, who always had a smile on his face,” the TSA said in a statement. “Although Eduard was with TSA for only two and half years, the entire team at DEN is saddened by the loss of one their own.”  

Faktorvich is the ninth TSA employee to die from COVID-19. Another 2,885 TSA employees have tested positive for the coronavirus.

“His death is a reminder to all of us at TSA of the ongoing seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the TSA said. “We remain committed to continuing to take every precaution to help protect our workforce as well as airline travelers.”

FBI Arrests Army Veteran After Finding 4 Pipe Bombs in His Colorado Home

Bradley Bunn, via Facebook.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

FBI agents arrested a 53-year-old Army veteran in Colorado for allegedly planning to use pipe bombs against law enforcement officers who tried to seize his weapons.

Bradley Bunn, a carpenter, was arrested Friday while walking to his car to head to an armed protest at the Denver State Capitol to rally against stay-at-home orders amid the coronavirus outbreak, U.S. prosecutors told The Durango Herald.

According to prosecutors at a court hearing on Wednesday, Bunn insisted he had the constitutional right to possess weapons, including land mines and artillery, and that he would “take out a few” law enforcement officers if they tried to seize his weapons.

During a search of his home, the FBI found bomb-making materials, an Army guide on building booby traps, and four pipe bombs, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney David Tonini.

His public defender said Bunn had mental health issues from serving in Iraq.

Michael H. Schneider Named Special Agent in Charge of Denver Field Office.

FBI’s Denver Field Office, via FBI.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Michael H. Schneider has been tapped to serve as the special agent in charge of the Denver Field Office.

Most recently, Scheinder was serving as a deputy assistant director of the Critical Incident Response Group (CIRG).

Schneider joined the FBI in 2004, working at the Bedford Resident Agency in New Hampshire under the Boston Field Office, where he investigated crimes and led a Safe Streets Gang Task Force.

In 2009, Scheider was promoted to supervisory special agent in the International Terrorism Operations Section at FBI headquarters in Washington D.C. In 2011, he led the counterterrorism program and Joint Terrorism Task Force at the St. Louis Field Office.

In 2014, Schneider became assistant special agent in charge of the National Security Branch of the St. Louis Field Office, overseeing counterterrorism, counterintelligence, intelligence, and cyber programs. He also led the field office’s response to the shooting of unarmed Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, whose death prompted Black Lives Matter protests across the country.

In 2017, Schneider was tapped to serve as chief of the Counter Improvised Explosive Devices Section of CIRG. He also served as the U.S. government’s on-scene commander for the Winter Olympics in Seoul, South Korea.

In 2018, he was promoted to deputy assistant director of CIRG.

Schneider earned a Bachelor of Science in finance from Indiana University School of Business. Before joining the FBI, he worked in corporate finance and investment banking.

FBI Agent Would Like to Meet With Denver Bar Customer He Accidentally Shot

FBI agent Chase Bishop.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The FBI agent who accidentally shot and wounded a customer at a Denver bar while dancing, wants to meet the victim, Fox News reports.

Agent Chase Bishop, who faces a charge of  second-degree assault charge, wants to sit down with the victim when appropriate, his attorney David Goddard says.

Goddard called the shooting “an incredibly tragic event” and hopes the man makes a full and speedy recovery. The man, who was shot in the leg, was treated an released from the hospital.

The Denver County judge is allowing Bishop to travel since he lives and works in D.C.

 

Bar Patron Shot By Off-Duty, Dancing FBI Agent to Get Free Drinks for Life

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Well, if there’s an upside to being shot by an FBI agent in a bar, here it is.

The Mile High Spirits in Denver, where a patron was shot in the leg by a dancing, off-duty FBI agent over the weekend, says the victim can “enjoy complimentary drinks forever” at the club.

Denver Police questioned the agent at headquarters before releasing him to an FBI supervisor, USA Today reports. Police are awaiting awaiting lab results to see if alcohol was a factor.

CBS News identified the agent as Chase Bishop of the bureau’s Washington Field Office.

In a Facebook posting, the bar wrote:

At Mile High Spirits, we pride ourselves on being a craft distillery with high-quality products and an engaging customer experience, in a fun and safe atmosphere. It is shocking that the only shooting to ever occur at our establishment came about as a result of an FBI agent entering our distillery tasting room carrying a loaded firearm without our knowledge, in violation of our rules. As a result of his misconduct, one of our innocent patrons was shot.

Our security team was able to execute a catastrophic event plan, ensuring, the safe exit of all patrons in the establishment after the shooting. We are deeply saddened by the events that occurred and look forward to speaking with representatives of the FBI, so we can come to understand his presence and his need to be armed in our establishment. The whole team at Mile High Spirits is praying for the victim’s quick recovery, and he’s welcome at Mile High Spirits to enjoy complimentary drinks forever.

Mile High Spirits Team

Retired FBI Agent on Agent’s Gun Firing on Dance Floor: ‘Shocked At The Poor Judgment’

James Gagliano (Linkedin photo)

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Over the weekend, an off-duty FBI agent in Denver made headlines when his gun slipped out of his pants on the dance floor and he accidentally fired it while trying to grab it. A patron was shot and wounded in the leg.

James A. Gagliano, a CNN law enforcement analyst and a retired FBI supervisory special agent, weighs in  on  CNN:

As a retired agent myself, I have mixed emotions about the dance floor incident.

Part of me sees a young agent out for an evening of innocent fun and electing to blow off some steam. It’s hard not to consider the fact that the bureau has been dealt a series of recent body blows — some self-inflicted and others pure partisan opportunism. With half the country calling for the agency’s head, who wouldn’t concede a harried agent a deserved night out to forget about things? Plus, I’ve always believed in the cautionary proverb: There but for the grace of God, go I.

Yet I also can’t help but be shocked at the poor judgment exhibited by a member of what is still the world’s premier law enforcement agency. Agents are expected to display sound judgment. This agent should have taken better care to conceal and secure his weapon. Even before he lost control of it, you can clearly see the weapon’s outline against his shirt in the video. That’s an egregiously unacceptable concealment effort.
And knowing he was armed, he may have elected to avoid the dance-off.

DEA: Biggest Opioid Distribution in U.S. History ‘Hijacked’ by Federal Lawyers

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A painstaking, two-year investigation into the biggest opioid distribution case in U.S. history yielded what investigators said was solid evidence that the company had failed to report suspicious orders of highly addictive painkillers.

But instead of bringing big penalties to the first-ever criminal case against a drug distribution company, the nation’s largest company, McKesson Corp., top attorneys at the DEA and Justice Department intervened, striking an agreement that was “far more lenient than the field division wanted,” according to the Washington Post

“This is the best case we’ve ever had against a major distributor in the history of the Drug Enforcement Administration,” said Schiller, who recently retired as assistant special agent in charge of DEA’s Denver field division after a 30-year career with the agency. “I said, ‘How do we not go after the number one organization?’ ”

Schiller called the intervention “insulting.”

“Morale has been broken because of it,” he added.

Helen Kaupang, a DEA investigator and supervisor for 29 years who worked on the McKesson case in Denver, minced no words: “Within the ranks, we feel like our system was hijacked.”

The Post wrote:

The result illustrates the long-standing conflict between drug investigators, who have taken an aggressive approach to a prescription opioid epidemic that killed nearly 200,000 people between 2000 and 2016, and the government attorneys who handle those cases at the DEA and the Justice Department.

None of McKesson’s warehouses would lose their DEA registrations. The company, a second-time offender, had promised in 2008 to be more diligent about the diversion of its pills to the street. It ultimately agreed to temporarily suspend controlled substance shipments at four distribution centers and pay a $150 million fine.

FBI Received Multiple Warnings about Man Who Killed Transit Official

Suspect Joshua Cummings

Suspect Joshua Cummings

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A man accused of shooting and killing an armed transit security official in downtown Denver late Tuesday night was on the federal terrorism watch list and kicked out of a mosque in Texas.

Local law enforcement warned federal authorities, including the FBI, that Cummings was in Colorado and staying at a hotel, CBS4 reports. 

Cummings, 37, was arrested Tuesday night after authorities say he shot and killed Scott Von Lanken, a 56-year-old Regional Transportation District security guard.

About a month ago, local police alerted the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force in Colorado to Cummings’ presence.

It’s unclear whether federal authorities did anything with the information.